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No matter if you wonder if Node.js is a good fit for your project or just want to see the popular examples of Node.js apps, after reading this article you will leave inspired.
Let’s take a look at 9 famous companies that used Node.js for their apps, analyze their motivation and outcomes.
Paypal is one of the largest and most well-known fintech software companies worldwide. The platform enables its users to transact with each other online quickly and easily in more than 100 currencies.
According to Paypal, the service has over 305 million active customer accounts (as of 2019). The Company has been using Node.js to build the consumer-facing side of its web applications.
Jeff Harrel, Senior Director of Payments Products and Engineering at PayPal says:
The Node.js app was built almost twice as fast with fewer people, in 33% fewer lines of code and 40% fewer files (in comparison with previous Java-based application).
Building an app like Paypal requires solid expertise in both the financial industry and cybersecurity. However, finding such talents isn’t easy; that’s why companies like Paypal often choose to take the help of an external software development company with experience in building similar products (you can find a list of top fintech software development vendors in an article here).
LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking service found in 2002 in Mountain View, California. LinkedIn allows users to invite anyone (whether a site user or not) to become a connection.
It is available in 24 languages and already has more than 706 million members in over 200 countries and territories. LinkedIn uses Node.js to empower the server side of its mobile app.
According to LinkedIn’s Mobile Development Lead, Kiran Prasad:
<blockquote><p>One reason was scale. The second is, if you look at Node, the thing it’s best at doing is talking to other services.</p></blockquote>
When compared with the previous Ruby on Rails-based version, the new mobile app is up to 20 times faster and uses only a fraction of resources – servers were cut from 30 to 3. The development itself was unusually fast.
Yahoo is an American multinational technology company, focusing and globally recognized for its web portal, search engine, and related services. Their search engine shares 1.65% of the search engine market which in total counts 4.57 billion users.
Eric Ferraiuolo, Principal Software Engineer at Yahoo explains:
<blockquote><p>You can make it scale, and it’s very performant, and every property that we’ve moved over to the Node.js stack has seen an increase in performance.</p></blockquote>
Node.js has changed and unified the frontend developer culture at Yahoo, it already powers multiple sites, and will soon power most of Yahoo.
Mozilla is a non-profit organization, mostly well-known for it’s free, open-source web browser (Firefox) available for Windows, OS X, Linux, Android, and Firefox OS, in +90 languages. As of June 2020, Firefox has approximately 8.5% of worldwide usage as a browser, making it the second most popular web browser.
Mozilla uses Node.js as a primary language in many of their web projects. One of them is the Mozilla Persona, a cross-platform sign-in technology.
Mark Mayo, Principal Engineer at Mozilla says:
<blockquote><p>We concretely decided to do Node for two reasons: One was the memory footprint” and “it was advantageous to be able to use the same language on the server side as well as the client side.”,“ It’s super empowering for the whole team.</p></blockquote>
Netflix is the world’s biggest global provider of video streaming including movies and television series, available in over 190 countries. As of July 2020, Netflix reported over 192 million subscribers worldwide, with more than 72 million in the U.S itself.
At Netflix, the whole user interface is built with Node. The technology proved so effective, that the company wants to use it also in other layers of the stack.
The team decided to use Node.js to achieve lightweight, modular and fast application. As a result, the startup time of their new app has been reduced by 70%.
Uber is an American multinational online transportation network company offering its services in over 80 countries and 900 cities worldwide (as of September 2020). The app pairs consumers with Uber drivers who use their own cars.
At the end of a ride, the complete fare is automatically billed to the customer’s credit card. As one of the first companies that put Node.js into full production, Uber has built its massive matching system on Node.js.
According to Uber, this technology has three core strengths:
Groupon is a global e-commerce marketplace that connects subscribers with local merchants by offering activities, travels, goods, and services at special prices. In 2019, Groupon operated in 15 countries worldwide and had over 48 million active customers.
In June 2015, the company reported the finish of migration of the whole Groupon web and mobile traffic from Ruby on Rails application to a new Node.js stack.
Sean McCullough, former Enterprise Node.js Developer at Groupon lists reasons like a vibrant community, NPM, performance, and easy scalability.
In comparison with the earlier Ruby on Rails platform, web pages got faster by about 50% and are able to serve much higher traffic. Groupon states:
<blockquote><p>We’re serving the same amount of traffic with less hardware compared to the old stack. Teams are able to deploy changes to their applications independently. We’ve been able to make site-wide feature and design changes much more quickly than we would have been able to with our old architecture.</p></blockquote>
GoDaddy is a publicly-traded Internet domain registrar and web hosting company. As of the end of 2019, with more than 19 million customers and 61 million domains under management, GoDaddy makes the world’s largest registrar.
In recent years company has revamped its entire backend to a fully open-source Node.js-based infrastructure.
According to Stephen Commisso, Senior Software Developer at GoDaddy, Node enables companies to build quality applications, deploy new features immediately, write unit and integration tests easily, REST easily. Another key feature is NPM access.
GoDaddy’s Vice President of Engineering, Antonio Silveira states:
<blockquote><p>We are now using about 10x fewer servers to host our customer websites and we reduced the Time To First Byte (TTFB) considerably from ~60ms to something around ~12ms. Performance is a key differentiator when we talk about web applications, including a better position in Google’s search results.</p></blockquote>
GoDaddy is now able to handle the same load with only 10% of the hardware.
eBay is an American multinational e-commerce company, offering consumer-to-consumer and business-to-consumer internet sales services. It’s free to use for buyers; fees for listing and selling the items are applied only to sellers.
Senthil Padmanabhan, Principal Web Engineer at eBay says:
<blockquote><p>We had two primary requirements for the project. First was to make the application as real time as possible–i.e., maintain live connections with the server. Second was to orchestrate a huge number of eBay-specific services that display information on the page–i.e.</p></blockquote>
Speed and simplicity, performance, scalability, feeling of transparency and control, single-threading, handling I/O-bound operations, not-blocking I/O, are only a few factors to mention that the company considered advantageous.
Node.js adoption in the big companies is due to several key factors:
Node.js is well-suited for building scalable network applications. Its non-blocking, event-driven architecture allows it to handle a large number of concurrent connections efficiently, which is essential for high-traffic enterprise applications.
Node.js is a popular choice for building microservices, a modern architectural style that structures an application as a collection of loosely coupled services. This approach is beneficial for enterprises looking to modernize legacy systems or to build flexible, scalable applications.
The Node.js ecosystem, including the npm package manager, offers a vast array of libraries and tools. This rich ecosystem allows enterprises to rapidly develop and deploy applications with a wide range of functionalities.
Node.js is particularly efficient for I/O-intensive tasks (like real-time communication, data streaming, and handling multiple requests), making it suitable for applications like web APIs, real-time services, and data processing systems.
Node.js has strong community support and contributions from large corporations, ensuring its continual improvement and sustainability. This backing is a key consideration for enterprises when adopting a technology.
Node.js supports cross-platform development, which is advantageous for enterprises that require their applications to be compatible with multiple operating systems.
Node.js fits well in cloud-native development environments and is compatible with various cloud hosting platforms and services, which is increasingly important for enterprises moving towards cloud-based solutions.
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