How Couchbase Mobile Outperforms MongoDB™ Atlas App Services

Extending Couchbase from the cloud to the edge to the device
Couchbase Mobile 3.1 simplifies apps and makes them more secure, scalable and efficient

Top 4 mobile challenges with MongoDB Atlas App Services and how Couchbase Mobile solves them

Challenge 1: Flexible deployment options

MongoDB Realm does not allow data storage and sync for the data center of your choice.

MongoDB Atlas App Services

MongoDB Atlas Device Sync is cloud centric and relies on network connectivity, which presents an unpredictable point of failure. Its reliance on the MongoDB Atlas backend-as-a-service (BaaS) platform to support mobile data sync service means that you can’t deploy the solution on premises, in private data centers, or in distributed cloud environments. This severely limits your options for meeting high availability and responsiveness requirements.

Couchbase Mobile

Couchbase Mobile is a flexible platform that supports a variety of advanced topologies for complex edge-to-cloud architectures, including peer-to-peer as well as multi-tier cloud-to-edge topologies.
You can deploy anywhere you need to – fully managed on Couchbase Capella App Services, or self-managed on premises or any private or public cloud.

Couchbase is cloud native, so you can use cloud tools such as the Couchbase Autonomous Operator for Kubernetes to easily deploy and manage your servers on the cloud or at the edge.

Challenge 2: Robust, secure, resilient data sync

MongoDB Realm's mobile sync offering is limited and restrictive.

MongoDB Atlas App Services

The MongoDB Realm mobile database is an object-oriented database that requires a schema to model the data and relationships. As a result, database migrations are costly. The MongoDB Atlas Device Sync solution is also limited in its capabilities. The use of predefined partition keys to determine realm membership imposes several restrictions because a document can exist in only one partition. Subsequent changes to the partition key require disabling and re-enabling Atlas Device Sync, which in turn can trigger a reset on all clients. Data conflict resolution is basic and offers no support for custom conflict resolution.

Couchbase Mobile

Couchbase Mobile provides Couchbase Lite, a NoSQL JSON document database with no schema and no data migration requirements. This vastly reduces the complexity of the app. This is especially important as the data model evolves with evolution of the app.

Couchbase Mobile’s sync solution offers the most flexibility. You can choose to sync data on demand or in real time subject to network availability. And built-in delta sync technology ensures only parts of a document that have changed are synced.
Couchbase Mobile channels provide flexible data partitioning, and document membership to channels can be dynamic. Conflict resolution is automatic, with enhanced support for custom conflict resolvers.

Challenge 3: Comprehensive mobile and edge platform support

MongoDB Realm offers limited support for non-mobile and embedded edge platforms.

MongoDB Atlas App Services

MongoDB Realm database is focused on mobile (Android, iOS, and React Native), and it offers limited support for non-mobile platforms – support for .NET was in beta until recently. This limits the range of applications it can support.

Couchbase Mobile

Couchbase Mobile’s platform support is far more comprehensive and includes native support for iOS, Android, .NET (Desktop, UWP, and Xamarin), and Java. Developers can build cross-platform native plugins on top of our native API layer. The Couchbase Lite C API can be deployed on a wide array of embedded devices and platforms, enabling a vastly broader range of offline-first applications.

Challenge 4: Support business-critical applications

MongoDB Realm is a very young product and still playing catch up.

MongoDB Atlas App Services

MongoDB Atlas App Services (formerly known as Realm) was released in 2021 and has a very limited number of real-world customer production use cases. As with any new technology, it's a gamble to invest in such an early release.

Couchbase Mobile

Introduced in 2014, Couchbase Mobile is a mature market-tested platform for building enterprise-grade offline-first solutions. Our customers’ production deployments have significantly influenced the evolution of the Couchbase platform. Ongoing enhancements to scalability, performance, availability, security, usability, and offline support have all been driven by real enterprise-grade use cases.

Webinar: Edge Computing With Couchbase – Applications and Architectures

Today's applications are now expected to be always on and always available. Distributed cloud workloads introduce a new wave of challenges around data management, data movement, and data storage as data privacy and governance policies further push data processing to the edge. Learn about use cases that benefit from such distributed topologies – and how Couchbase makes it all work smoothly.

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Why enterprises choose Couchbase Mobile


Delivering drinks and snacks to consumers requires a complex web of interlocking distribution systems and ever-shifting logistics. PepsiCo partnered with Couchbase to architect a solution for enabling field sales reps at the edge in their stores. The app operates even when offline, and syncs in real time when connected, allowing reps in the field to service customers anywhere regardless of internet speed or connectivity.

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Lotum uses Couchbase Mobile to provide a consistent and always-on experience for the millions of monthly active users of their most popular game title. Embedded data processing makes Lotums games fast and reliable on all of their supported platforms, regardless of connectivity. Gamers can play wherever they go, even without internet.

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Backpack EMR

BackpackEMR provides mobile clinics with critical technology that’s missing from most standard patient-tracking solutions. The BackpackEMR system is powered by Couchbase Mobile, which seamlessly manages all devices across the clinic, transfers up to 60,000 documents within seconds, and uses peer-to-peer sync to bring modern medical care to remote patients at mobile clinics in 19 countries.

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Sync Think

SyncThink develops innovative technology that can assess and monitor concussions on the sports field even without a network connection. They required a data platform that could meet rigorous patient privacy regulations such as HIPAA, as well as work without internet connectivity. After evaluating a range of other data platforms, SyncThink selected Couchbase Mobile for its mature, robust, and edge-ready platform.

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