Equipment for a Social Networking App

Discussion in 'iOS Programming' started by Abigboy, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. Abigboy macrumors newbie

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    Aug 15, 2013
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    Chicago
    #1
    Hey everyone. So I am almost done with my second book on ios and objective-c and am about to start my first app, so I have the knowledge to code apps (hopefully :)). I had an idea today to make a social networking app that kinda combines yelp and twitter in a way (if you need more info to help me with my problem I would be happy to expand). Before I spend time planning this out, I was wondering what equipment I would need and what it would cost to run this app and make it. Google hasn't really helped me so far, but a random guess would be I would have to buy a server. Any help would be appreciated and if you need more info just ask. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. 1458279 Suspended

    1458279

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    #2
    I'm sure others have MUCH more background than I do, but from what I've learned so far is that the cost is based on things like traffic and once you get past a certain point, the cost goes up by quite a bit.

    I've heard that Amazon offers some of the better scaleable servers, but they are also supposed to be one of the most expensive.

    Someone in another forum developed an app that was dependent on a server. He calculated the costs based on downloads and had a great margin. So many people stole his app and used his server that it had no hope of ever being profitable. The server costs was far more than what he got from sales of the apps, he stated that he had about 10 users on his server for every 1 app he sold.

    You can setup your own server, but you have to be able to support the traffic. This is where companies like Amazon come in, they set you up with the bandwidth you want, but it costs much more.

    If you need high bandwidth, you might call your local ISP and see what it costs for a T1 or fractional T1, if they are even able to provide that.

    I know this isn't a complete answer, but could give you a start where to look.

    I've seen some posts about developers that talk in detail about what they've done to address their server needs, just haven't seen any posts here about it.
     
  3. Duncan C macrumors 6502a

    Duncan C

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    #3
    I agree with Karl's advice, below. Setting up your own server isn't really practical. It costs a fortune to have fault-tolerant, always-on servers, handle backups, scheduled maintenance, etc, etc. You need to have a pretty large enterprise to make it cost-effective to do it yourself.

    You are much better off renting virtual server space from a company who provides such services. There are lots of options, and the costs generally go up with the level of customization and the amount of storage/processing/network traffic you use. Make sure your business model allows for scaling your server to keep up with demand.

    There are tons of companies that offer server rental. Try 1and1 and GoDaddy, just to name a couple. Amazon and Google also provide turnkey server systems as Karl said.

    Having others steal traffic on your server is not something I have heard of before.

    I would suggest some sort of handshaking to prevent that, including account registration and some sort of signed handshaking with your app.
     
  4. Abigboy thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Thanks guys for the advice I'll check out all of the options you suggested.
     
  5. Punicasoft macrumors member

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    Jul 27, 2013
    #5
    Having your own server or renting one will be too much of maintenance work.
    I would suggest taking a look at Google App Engine for your backend needs.
     
  6. Abigboy thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    Thanks again for all the great responses. That article was really interesting and helped me a lot, thanks for linking it.
     
  7. 1458279 Suspended

    1458279

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    #8
    Glad it was of help :D

    I found it very interesting too, it seems like Amazon and others are actually hurting the cloud by charging those kind of rates. They've got to have a HUGE profit margin if it's that much cheaper to run your own server. Imagine that kind of savings could go into your pocket, and hardware just keeps getting cheaper and cheaper.

    Think about those that live in a city where Google setup fiber! I've heard you can run huge bandwidth in those cities.
     
  8. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Redondo Beach, California
    #9
    You are getting way ahead of yourself. Fist write the app and set up the server process on your one home system. If you only have a a couple dozen users a home system will work OK. You will have a lot of debugging to do before you need to set up something more powerful.

    One thing you might do is compress the data that is sent to and from the server because many times you pay for the traffic by the byte, Also the shorter messages are faster to send. But it will be a long time before you need a big server and a backup server or two. You need to write the software first, booth for the App and on the server side.
     
  9. Duncan C macrumors 6502a

    Duncan C

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    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #10
    Note that everybody quoted in that article said that cloud based servers were useful at first, but that they stopped being cost-effective once they reached a certain size.

    For your initial development, a server in your closet is fine. When you go live, though, you have to think about redundancy, network capacity, ability to grow capacity, etc.

    I would suggest building a flexible architecture that can be hosted on your server or on the cloud and switched between them easily. Developing and debugging your system will likely be easier on your hardware. Then when you launch, get a small server on the cloud with an option to expand. Watch your usage carefully and have a plan in place to build your own server farm once your server rental costs reach a certain point.
     
  10. Abigboy thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 15, 2013
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    Chicago
    #11
    Yeah I noticed that about the article and it made a lot of sense. Thanks for the tips. Thanks again all of you for the detailed responses.
     
  11. dejo Moderator

    dejo

    Staff Member

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    The Centennial State
    #12
    Plus, a lot of ISPs don't allow you to use your connection for a home-based server.
     

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