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Firebase vs OpenShift: What are the differences?

What is Firebase? The Realtime App Platform. Firebase is a cloud service designed to power real-time, collaborative applications. Simply add the Firebase library to your application to gain access to a shared data structure; any changes you make to that data are automatically synchronized with the Firebase cloud and with other clients within milliseconds.

What is OpenShift? Red Hat's free Platform as a Service (PaaS) for hosting Java, PHP, Ruby, Python, Node.js, and Perl apps. OpenShift is Red Hat's Cloud Computing Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering. OpenShift is an application platform in the cloud where application developers and teams can build, test, deploy, and run their applications.

Firebase and OpenShift are primarily classified as "Realtime Backend / API" and "Platform as a Service" tools respectively.

Some of the features offered by Firebase are:

  • Add the Firebase library to your app and get access to a shared data structure. Any changes made to that data are automatically synchronized with the Firebase cloud and with other clients within milliseconds.
  • Firebase apps can be written entirely with client-side code, update in real-time out-of-the-box, interoperate well with existing services, scale automatically, and provide strong data security.
  • Data Accessibility- Data is stored as JSON in Firebase. Every piece of data has its own URL which can be used in Firebase's client libraries and as a REST endpoint. These URLs can also be entered into a browser to view the data and watch it update in real-time.

On the other hand, OpenShift provides the following key features:

  • Built-in support for Node.js, Ruby, Python, PHP, Perl, and Java (the standard in today's Enterprise)
  • OpenShift is extensible with a customizable cartridge functionality that allows developers to add any other language they wish. We've seen everything from Clojure to Cobol running on OpenShift.
  • OpenShift supports frameworks ranging from Spring, to Rails, to Play

"Realtime backend made easy" is the primary reason why developers consider Firebase over the competitors, whereas "Good free plan" was stated as the key factor in picking OpenShift.

OpenShift is an open source tool with 916 GitHub stars and 562 GitHub forks. Here's a link to OpenShift's open source repository on GitHub.

9GAG, Square, and CodeCombat are some of the popular companies that use Firebase, whereas OpenShift is used by Cloud9 IDE, Codecraft Solutions, and Jollydays. Firebase has a broader approval, being mentioned in 838 company stacks & 957 developers stacks; compared to OpenShift, which is listed in 48 company stacks and 52 developer stacks.

- No public GitHub repository available -

What is Firebase?

Firebase is a cloud service designed to power real-time, collaborative applications. Simply add the Firebase library to your application to gain access to a shared data structure; any changes you make to that data are automatically synchronized with the Firebase cloud and with other clients within milliseconds.

What is OpenShift?

OpenShift is Red Hat's Cloud Computing Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering. OpenShift is an application platform in the cloud where application developers and teams can build, test, deploy, and run their applications.
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What are some alternatives to Firebase and OpenShift?
Parse
With Parse, you can add a scalable and powerful backend in minutes and launch a full-featured app in record time without ever worrying about server management. We offer push notifications, social integration, data storage, and the ability to add rich custom logic to your app’s backend with Cloud Code.
MongoDB
MongoDB stores data in JSON-like documents that can vary in structure, offering a dynamic, flexible schema. MongoDB was also designed for high availability and scalability, with built-in replication and auto-sharding.
Auth0
A set of unified APIs and tools that instantly enables Single Sign On and user management to all your applications.
Heroku
Heroku is a cloud application platform – a new way of building and deploying web apps. Heroku lets app developers spend 100% of their time on their application code, not managing servers, deployment, ongoing operations, or scaling.
Realm
The Realm Mobile Platform is a next-generation data layer for applications. Realm is reactive, concurrent, and lightweight, allowing you to work with live, native objects.
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Decisions about Firebase and OpenShift
No stack decisions found
Interest over time
Reviews of Firebase and OpenShift
Review ofOpenShiftOpenShift

I needed a PaaS provider that didn't drop all the time and it's hard to find a good option for PHP applications. Openshift takes care of it. They are a little behind on PHP versions, but that can be solved with a custom cartridge. It requires a little more elbow grease to get rolling when you want to implement something they don't already have, but their quickstarts are great to get rolling with the basics quickly.

Review ofFirebaseFirebase

Firebase is great, cheap and very flexible. Their docs are very helpful and so is the customer support, but the one thing that is so awesome about firebase is that everything is done in realtime!

Review ofFirebaseFirebase

We were looking for a solution to find out about all the errors our customers experienced but never informed us about.

How developers use Firebase and OpenShift
Avatar of Instacart
Instacart uses FirebaseFirebase

We use it for a few things. We use it internally for a few dashboards because it’s actually really nice to have real-time dashboard data with Firebase. We also use it extensively for live order updating. For example, when a shopper is picking your items, you'll be able to go on your order screen. There will be live showing like found or not found or whatever. You'll have live position updating of your shopper on the map. You will have live information of the status of the order like “Nicole is now picking up your order,” and all these kind of things, so you don’t have to reload the page or pull or anything. Just live updates happen natively through Firebase API, which is nice.

Avatar of Instacart
Instacart uses FirebaseFirebase

We use it for a few things. We use it internally for a few dashboards because it’s actually really nice to have real-time dashboard data with Firebase. We also use it extensively for live order updating. For example, when a shopper is picking your items, you'll be able to go on your order screen. There will be live showing like found or not found or whatever. You'll have live position updating of your shopper on the map. You will have live information of the status of the order like “Nicole is now picking up your order,” and all these kind of things, so you don’t have to reload the page or pull or anything. Just live updates happen natively through Firebase API, which is nice.

Avatar of ttandon
ttandon uses FirebaseFirebase

Used for storing results of users (malaria predictions) and displaying to user in the app. Although the realtime aspect wasn't huge in this project, it was much quicker to push data elements for each user as firebase elements since they were purely numerical and very small. And again, the idea of familiarity - I've worked with Firebase at previous hackathons, so no need to spend time going through docs, just straight to the coding.

Avatar of NewCraft
NewCraft uses FirebaseFirebase

Firebase let's us iterate quickly. We've used the Realtime Database to build rich UX features– like push notifications– fast. Likewise, Firebase Authentication and Cloud Functions save us from having to rebuild redundant server infrastructure. Even though Firebase can get pricey, we've saved money in developer time.

Avatar of Addo
Addo uses FirebaseFirebase

Still in development, but we will soon (January 2016) be releasing a version that uses Firebase to keep the front end up to date in real time. Certain data are synchronised across RDS and Firebase to optimize the user experience.

Avatar of kelumkps
kelumkps uses OpenShiftOpenShift

SG-TravelBuddy server application is hosted on Red Hat OpenShift Online (v3). SG-TravelBuddy mobile (Android) app is connecting to this server for data operations.

Avatar of InApplet
InApplet uses OpenShiftOpenShift

Servidor das aplicações de Back-end

Avatar of azawisza
azawisza uses OpenShiftOpenShift

Main cloud infrastructure provider

Avatar of Miyuru Sankalpa
Miyuru Sankalpa uses OpenShiftOpenShift

To host the blog powered by ghost

Avatar of AyeDeals
AyeDeals uses OpenShiftOpenShift

OpenShift is our PaaS.

How much does Firebase cost?
How much does OpenShift cost?