Why use this?

Offline-first design

rs.js is offline-first by design, meaning data is stored locally first [1], and synced to and from a remote storage account second. This makes it a robust sync solution for mobile applications, where slow and spotty network connections are a normal situation.

It’s also useful, when a backend goes down, as users can just keep using their app and have their data automatically synced whenever the server is back online.

Zero backend

rs.js is built for creating fully unhosted apps. Meaning users are able to connect their own storage account to apps on their devices, without app developers having to store or even see their users’ data. Thus, developers don’t have to integrate, manage, maintain and secure a storage server or cloud.

A nice side effect of this design is that your app can scale to millions of users with literally zero cost for storage.

Also, in case you decide to abandon your app [2], users can continue to use it across devices until they switch to a new one on their own time. You may even reverse your decision at some point and still have a lot of your users right there.

Data sharing

Different apps can access the same data, so you can build an app that uses and manipulates existing data, without building import/export features or having users start over from scratch.

Even better, you can get advanced capabilities for free by using shared, open-source data modules, which you can cooperate on with other developers.

For example: if you want to enable users to share files from their storage account in your app, you can just integrate the shares module within a matter of minutes, giving you client-side thumbnail generation and other features in the process.

Reliability

The very first prototype of rs.js has been written in November 2010. Since then, it has been used, tested, stabilized, and improved in more than 4000 commits. The library has been used in commercial apps by hundreds of thousands of users, and in countries around the globe. We have seen pretty much every device, browser, privacy setting and network connection there is, and fixed bugs and issues for most of them.

In short: you can rely on rs.js to do its job. And if you do find a critical bug, there’s a team of people who will help with fixing it.

One JS API for multiple storage options

rs.js optionally supports Dropbox and Google Drive as storage backends which users can connect. Conveniently, as an app developer you don’t have to implement anything special in order for these backends to work with your code [3]. Just configure OAuth app keys, and your users can choose between 3 different backends to connect.

Footnotes

[1]Except for apps and use cases that don’t require caching, like e.g. with Sharesome
[2]Let’s just be honest: nothing lasts forever.
[3]Except adding UI for it, in case you’re not using the connect widget, of course.