Top Local Databases For React Native App Development

React Native App Development

With an unlimited potential to capitalize through the mobile market, decision-makers have always preferred React Native for cross-platform mobile app development. Its popularity has risen over the years, with 42% of developers using it for cross-platform development, and companies like Facebook, UberEats, Airbnb, Instagram, and many others adopting it to their advantage. But, it is an indisputable fact that these success stories would have fallen short to meet the market requirements without an organized data management system. 

A database management system acts as a backbone of the framework for improving its efficiency, scalability, and organizational management, directly affecting the usability and user experience of a mobile app. Keeping these things in mind, let us look at some of the top local databases for React Native app development that are creating a buzz in the development community. 

Top 7 Local Databases for React Native App Development

1. Firebase

React Native database - Firebase

Firebase is regarded as one of the top database platforms for mobile and web applications that has been lately acquired and backed by Google. It is a cloud-hosted NoSQL database that stores its data in JSON form, offering synchronization with all its connected clients. Its native integration with Android and iOS Firebase SDKs provides both real-time data synchronization and offline facilities, making it an optimal local database for React Native applications. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Real-time synchronization allowing client collaborations.
  • Offline facilities where Firebase Realtime SDK persists data to the disk.
  • Accessible from client devices without the need for an application server.
  • Offers scalability by splitting data across multiple databases. 

2. Realm

React Native database - Realm

Realm is an open-source mobile database by MongoDB that has an object-oriented data model. Its synchronization works bi-directionally, keeping data updated between the client and MongoDB Atlas database cluster, therefore, working offline by persisting data on-disk. Being a lightweight database, it is specifically designed to resolve the challenges with mobile application development where apps perform in unpredictable environments. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Offers fast-querying through lazy loading and zero-copy architecture.
  • Real-time data synchronization across multiple devices, users, and backend.
  • The object-oriented model allows streamlining of complex codes in the application program.
  • Data encryption offers security through in-flight and at-rest encryption. 

3. PouchDB

React Native database - Pouchdb

PouchDB is an open-source, JavaScript, in-line database using NoSQL specially designed for offline-first mobile and web applications. Its in-browser database saves data locally using WebSQL and IndexedDB while offline, and synchronizes user data online using CouchDB and compatible servers. Its lightweight feature and cross-browser compatibility for cross-platform mobile applications make it ideal for React Native applications. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Cross-browser compatibility makes applications run on different environments equally.
  • In-browser database saves time and eliminates the need to perform queries over the network.
  • Its data synchronization makes React Native application highly performant. 
  • CRUD functions can be queried and mutated using a simple JavaScript API. 

4. SQLite

React Native database - SQlLte

SQLite is an open-source C language library featuring a SQL database engine, following a PostgreSQL syntax for mobile and web applications development. However, instead of the standard client-server model, this database is directly embedded into the end program, storing data locally in the application software. Furthermore, it has zero configuration and eliminates the need for service management or access control, making it compatible with high-performance React Native applications. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Serverless capabilities eliminate the need for a separate server process.
  • Data is directly stored locally in a single cross-platform disk file.
  • No requirement for external dependencies.
  • ACID compliance makes transactions safe from multiple threads or processes.

5. WatermelonDB

React Native database - Watermelon DB

WatermelonDB is an open-source database, also known as a reactive database, specifically designed for complex React and React Native applications. Built on SQLite foundation, it leverages lazy loading to fully load a database into JavaScript quickly and inexpensively for an offline-first app. However, unlike SQLite, the database is entirely observable, making it a unique characteristic feature to automatically re-render UI and its related tasks. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • It can scale through thousands of database records without affecting the application speed. 
  • Offers static typing with Flow or TypeScript.
  • Changes in the database automatically re-renders the UI.
  • Its offline-first feature synchronizes data to the application backend. 

6. BerkeleyDB

Oracle Berkley DB

Backed up by Oracle, BerkeleyDB is an open-source software library providing a high-performance embedded database for key/value data. It is a NoSQL database built with C-language that can support thousands of concurrent processes, offering scalability opportunities for a large and complex application. Despite not being a relational database, its advanced features allow database transactions, write-ahead logging, and multi-version concurrency control. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Custom data management solutions without any overheads associated with traditional databases.
  • Offline synchronization offers concurrent access from multiple users. 
  • Highly scalable opportunities eliminate the need for expensive re-writes with system growth in the future.

7. Vasern

Vasern

Vasern is another open-source database specifically designed for complex cross-platform React Native applications. It enables a native store engine for tackling issues with Native performance and even strives to provide zero dependencies to avoid performance bottlenecks. Apart from the local data storage, it even offers cloud storage and synchronizes data across multiple users when online. 

Its key capabilities include:

  • Offers local data store for complex React Native applications.
  • Almost zero dependencies reduce performance complexities.
  • It uses the SCRAM-SHA-1 mechanism for authentication and role-based access control against server-side data infiltration. 

Conclusion

With the growing popularity of React Native framework for developing cross-platform applications, the large availability of databases would inevitably be a crucial player in the competitive software market. For example, one database might provide storage access to both web and mobile applications, while the other would be specifically designed for mobile apps. On the other hand, while some databases offer real-time synchronization over the cloud, others would directly embed data over the application disk. 

The choice of an appropriate database usually depends on factors like the complexity of data, codes, synchronization, memory management, and data conflicts. Therefore, irrespective of its compatibility with React Native applications, a suitable database must be chosen by considering the project requirements and the possibilities of changes it might go through in the future.

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Hardik Shah

Hardik Shah

Hardik Shah works as a Tech Consultant at Simform. He leads large-scale mobility programs that cover platforms, solutions, governance, standardization, and best practices. Connect with him to discuss the best practices of software methodologies @hsshah_.