Google I/O: Simplify app development with Firebase updates

Application development is becoming increasingly complex. Developers need to build apps for different platforms and a growing number of form factors. They must also meet increasing requirements in terms of security and scalability. To help developers deal with all of this, Google is rolling out a series of new updates. by Firebase its application backend development program.

“We invest in helping developers solve problems that don’t always necessarily differentiate their products, like building backend infrastructure and scaling it, things like security, or the need to integrate APIs. third parties,” Francis Ma, Firebase product manager, told ZDNet. That way, he added, developers can stay focused on what they “need to do to keep pace with consumer expectations and to reach users where they are.”

The updates, announced at Google I/O on Wednesday, are primarily aimed at making Firebase work better with some of Google’s most popular developer products, as well as a broader open ecosystem of tools. . These updates will impact the roughly 3 million developers who use Firebase.

Here are some of the main new features:

Integrations with Android

To simplify the work of developers, Google integrates the Firebase Crashlytics tool directly into Android Studio, Google’s integrated development environment (IDE) for the Android operating system.

Crashlytics is a crash reporting tool within Firebase that helps developers track their app’s performance after launch. Developers can track crashes, errors, and user feedback, so they can make improvements to the next version of their app.

However, until now, developers had to switch between Crashlytics and their IDE to fix these issues. Now Google is bringing the Crashlytics experience right into Android Studio with a feature called “App Quality Insights Window”. Developers will be able to automatically see crashes and identify the specific line of code that caused the errors. They can both recognize and fix problems while staying in the editor.

“We all know developers like to be in the flow and be productive,” Ma said.

An improved experience for web developers

Developers often use modern frameworks like Angular, Vue, Next.js, Nuxt to build and deploy web applications. However, this can add more complexity in terms of app deployment management. Some frameworks may be for front-end deployments, while others are for back-end deployments, and developers need to orchestrate everything.

Now developers can deploy modern web apps using a single command: firebase deploy. Google automatically determines all dependencies and deploys the app to Firebase’s hosting and backend services.

Better management of third-party APIs

Developers often use a number of third-party APIs in their applications, usually between 20 and 40 APIs. They can, for example, use a popular provider like Stripe to process payments or Twilio to handle email communications.

Two years ago, Google launched Firebase Extensions, which offers out-of-the-box solutions and integrations so developers can easily deploy them. Today, Google is introducing the concept of Extensions events, which gives developers the ability to deploy pre-packaged APIs while further customizing them.

For example, a developer might already deploy a Stripe extension to handle payment for a subscription. Now, with extension events, he can further customize the workflow. If a user cancels their subscription, for example, the developer can now send them a discount offer to try to win them back.

Google also announced the launch of third-party extensions for marketing, search, and payment processing. Two new Snap extensions, for example, allow users to connect with Snap and promote their products in their stories.

Improved security

In order to improve security for app developers, Google provides a project called App Check. App Check verifies that incoming traffic is coming from a developer’s app on a legitimate device, and blocks traffic that doesn’t have valid credentials. This helps protect the app against threats like billing fraud, phishing, spoofing, data theft, and poisoning. Additionally, App Check now integrates with the Play Integrity API.

Deeper Flutter integration

Flutter is Google’s open-source UI framework that lets developers build cross-platform apps from a single code. All Firebase plugins for Flutter are now available, and Google has added official Flutter documentation, snippets, and customer support to make it easier to use Flutter and Firebase together.

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Google I/O: Simplify app development with Firebase updates

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