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The Simplest, Fastest Way to Add Login to Your App?

The Onymos Way and the Other Way

You can drive a car perfectly without knowing how the engine works. With one key turn, you’ve successfully incorporated an engineering marvel into your daily routine.

This concept of abstraction manifests itself in many forms. It allows us to generalize — and utilize — concepts while putting aside their complexities. I can use pneumonic devices without having a degree in the psychology of the brain. Even if I wasn’t an engineer, I could still press popcorn on my microwave and expect an amazing snack. There’s so much more I can think of: Keurigs, switchboards, record players, and my favorite — Onymos.

As mobile app developers, we have several tools at our disposal such as the Ionic framework. And while it makes the UI component of programming that much easier, imagine making even the nitty-gritty, hard-coding part of programming seamless! That’s where Onymos comes in. Onymos provides APIs for any necessary feature of a mobile app, from basic features like login to more interactive ones such as chat and geo-services. The one I’ll be dissecting today is Onymos Access, which provides end-to-end integration with Apple, Facebook, and Google login with just a few simple steps.

My Background

I’m a college student who has only just now started to parse the vast array of programming languages (yes, the wordplay was intentional). Having only had a background in languages like C++ and Java, scripting languages such as JavaScript and TypeScript that are used for hybrid mobile app development are much more unfamiliar to me. However, being interested in mobile app development, I had to start somewhere without feeling extremely overwhelmed.

For my first-ever mobile app, I decided to start simple — a single button that would allow a user to sign in. I attempted two routes for implementing login: with and without Onymos Access.

User Login Without Onymos Access

Let’s start with the more traditional way. First, I had to create my own Firebase project and configure several items on my own. I had to download a “google-services” file, get the reversed iOS URL scheme, go to an index.html file, create a header, and paste it in… even typing this out is pretty tedious. On top of the basic configuration, I had to look at the documentation to call sign-in and sign-out functions, and write all the code myself.

And this was only for Google Sign-In — incorporating other providers would’ve taken triple the time! I did eventually finish and learn a lot by the end of it, but it was extremely time-consuming and was harder to complete when I knew that there was an easier option waiting for me on the other side.

User Login With Onymos Access

Onymos Access, however, was a cakewalk compared to my journey of figuring out Google Sign-In by myself with no prior mobile app development experience. The Quickstart Guides on the Onymos website contain a lot of information but remain straightforward, providing easily pastable code and references. It also walked me through configuration, which I didn’t have to worry much about since Onymos already provided me will all the credentials I needed (iOS URL scheme, Facebook app ID, etc.). The only external thing required from my end was enabling Sign in with Apple on Xcode, which was just one more easy click. I was impressed and relieved to have been able to get a sign-in feature for three providers (Apple, Facebook, and Google) with just a few steps.

If it was this easy to implement one feature, I could build an entire mobile app and have it up and running in the App Store within a week! Onymos’ Features-as-a-Service handles all of the potential front-to-back-end problems that are bound to arise in mobile app programming. Just imagine what the future of app development will be like if everything is suddenly made this much easier. It will create space for us as developers to build efficiency and maximize progress while effortlessly understanding the big picture.

Remember my car analogy from earlier? Features-as-a-Service is like turning a key. Get ready for a smooth drive, because I promise you that Onymos is worth hitting the gas for!

Vara is a college sophomore from the Bay Area studying computer science at the University of Michigan. Her interests include reading, color guard, fashion, and learning about the many uses of technology and programming such as Web Development. You can reach her by email.  

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