Node.js Is Fast Becoming the Predominant Platform Among Developers

Charlotte Dunlap
Charlotte Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • As a library and platform for the JavaScript language, Node.js is gaining steam among developers, vendors and enterprises.
  • Two Node-based MEAP startups stand out: Feed Henry and StrongLoop.

Node.js has been gaining in popularity among enterprise developers and mobile app platform vendors alike. Node.js – a server-side platform and library, also referred to as a runtime system, used with the JavaScript language – has a community of millions of developers and is available as commercialized technology by innovative startups including FeedHenry and StrongLoop. The technology is also being adopted by leading MEAP vendors. Highlighting its growing importance is the fact that the mobile API tier for Walmart, LinkedIn, Yahoo, eBay, Paypal and others is written using Node.js. The maturing technology is being used in more and more mission-critical systems. This is because Node.js is flexible, lightweight and easy to learn with high-performance capabilities (based on Google’s V8 JavaScript engine) that support millions of transactions. The Node ecosystem now consists of over 80,000 modules or plug-ins available. Having a massive open source Node community ensures valuable support; for example, when a developer needs to integrate with an obscure backend database or other data source, fellow developers with similar experiences are quick to rally with help.

Two MEAP/MBaaS vendors founded on Node.js are FeedHenry and StrongLoop. FeedHenry’s mobile application platform has always placed a strong emphasis on how applications connect securely to backend systems. The company just released a workforce management solution with pre-built components of field workers’ mobile apps, able to be customized to support workflow processes and backend integration. StrongLoop’s portfolio includes LoopBack (an open source API framework) and MBaaS, offerings which provide both cloud and on-premises versions. I have written in more detail on both these companies (please see FeedHenry Launches Workforce App Builder with Pre-built Backend Integration to Help Penetrate the Enterprise, July 18, 2014; and StrongLoop Crowds into Burgeoning MBaaS Space via PaaS Partners, September 23, 2014). Both startups have unique go-to-market strategies in comparison to traditional MEAP pure plays, aimed at pursuing PaaS partnership to grow their cloud ecosystems and reach a broader audience of enterprise developers.

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