A new era for Titanium devs: the Titanium SDK goes open-source & Axway’s mBaaS is being shut down

Veselina Staneva

In February Axway announced that the Titanium SDK will no longer be supported as of March 1, 2022. And if this news wasn’t shocking enough for the Titanium developers, the announcement also stated that Axway’s Mobile Backend Services will be discontinued effective September 1 next year. The Titanium community was fast to respond with a very positive attitude about the SDK's future and begin the process of taking ownership of the project. Still, many questions were raised around the future of the project and the available backend options. In this post, I’ll try to summarize the what has happened so far and offer a glimpse at what the future may hold.

What does this mean for Titanium Developers?

Put in simple words, the Titanium SDK is being handed over to the community and from now on it will rely entirely on their effort for support and further development. Private repositories that enable utilizing the Titanium SDK are made publicly available here. As for the Titanium apps that are not using Axway’s backend:

...will continue to function after March 1, 2022 unless Apple or Google introduces changes that break the SDK version used by the application.

To summarize, developers can continue working on their Titanium apps as usual and rely on the community to ensure continuity of the open-source project or choose to re-develop their apps in one of the many alternative options. As for the “lucky ones” who are also using Axway’s Mobile Backend - next year they’ll have no other option but to find an alternative backend solution for their projects.

The Titanium Community’s response

At first, the announcement triggered mixed emotions and various comments on social media:

Just one day after the official announcement the community created a dedicated TiDev slack channel and a non-profit corporation called “TiDev, Inc.” was born. The organization was headed by Josh Lambert with the purpose of taking over the long-term maintenance of the SDK and related tooling. Many other passionate Titanium contributors sharing his views about a bright future ahead had joined his effort by putting both time and resources to help this mission go forward.

I know everybody is a bit rattled with the news over the last 48 hours about the future of the TItanium SDK. If you’re like me, a substantial portion of your monthly income depends on it existing and being supported into the foreseeable future.
While I know that at first glance, that future seems iffy, I have a good feeling that this community is strong. If organized properly, we can not only SURVIVE but even THRIVE. Pumping new life into something that’s been with us for years is something that is straight-up invigorating.
And I don’t know about you, but I’m excited about the prospect that it could happen. SO TOWARDS THAT END."- February 25th, 2020, Josh Lambert in the The Titanium community

On the other hand, when it comes to backend solutions there was a multitude of questions and suggestions about alternatives. Still, at this moment in time the next steps seem unclear and surely the discussions around the migrations will be just getting more and more detailed as the End of Support for Axway’s Mobile Backend Services is getting closer.

What are the options for a backend solution out here?

In general, developers using Axway’s Backend would have to choose between finding another mobile backend platform or creating a self-hosted solution based on their needs. Both options have their pros and con as each addresses different use cases and requires different levels of resources and support. Some of the alternatives mentioned around the community when it comes to managed services were Heroku, AWS, SashiDo and others. Additionally, each developer would have to plan how to migrate in a safe and secure manner, in order to minimize the negative impact on their app users.

What SashiDo can offer?

SashiDo is a robust mBaaS platform built on top of Parse open-source technology that simplifies mobile app development and enables you to create awesome apps with Parse, MongoDB, and NodeJS. There are quite a few similarities between our platform and Axway’s MBaaS as we provide all the core Parse.com features like user-friendly Dashboard, handy DB Browser, Push Notifications, CloudCode, Background Jobs, WebHooks, Live Queries, Hosted Pages, and more out of the box. What’s more, we have further improved many of those and also introduced cool new things like the Engines and Build & Deployment features that give you better control over your app's performance. We also support various SDKs and multiple regions where you can host your apps. All this wrapped up with the most amazing and responsive support!

To see for yourself how SashiDo looks on the inside here is our 45-day free trial where you can create a test app in minutes and take the platform for a spin.

Did you say “how I can migrate”?

Well, this is also something that has been covered! You can easily connect to the SashiDo database using a MongоDB client of your choice. Here you will need the database URL which you can find in the SashiDo Dashboard > Your App > App settings > Security and Keys. And thanks to Joseph from Underlabs who has created the ArrowDB 2 Sashido Migration Tool you can migrate your database from ArrowDB as well without too many hassles. You can find all the needed instructions about how to use the tool in the README file and in case you find anything missing or you have suggestions - feel free to open an issue in the repo. Don’t forget to share and star the repo if the tool was helpful to you! ;)

If you have any questions about how to set up your SashiDo account or you need some assistance, do not hesitate to drop us a line at support@sashido.io. We’re always happy to help!

Useful resources:

Similarities between Parse and Axway’s MBaaS
Product Update: Changes to Application Development Services – Appcelerator

Veselina Staneva

Business Dev & Product Manager @ SashiDo.

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