10 leading companies that switched to Node.js

The popularity of Node.js, an open source, JavaScript runtime environment which runs on various platform such as Windows, Linux, Unix  is significantly increasing. Due to its lightweight, single threaded, and scalability, it is one of the fast growing projects on the internet. This has inspired a lot of companies to use Node.js on their server side including LinkedIn, Netflix, Paypal and many more. Let’s find out more about the companies that switched to Node.js along with the reasons behind switching.

1. LinkedIn: 

LinkedIn is a social networking site dedicated to everyone looking for new opportunities to grow their careers and build a connection with other professionals from different backgrounds including business, employment. It has over 450 million members.

Image credit: Will Williamson

LinkedIn replaced their back-end infrastructure built on Ruby on Rails with Node.js for a mobile app. Factors like scalability and performance efficiency were the most important reasons for it to switch to Node.js.

With these changes, the new version LinkedIn had lower memory overhead and become much faster which ran up to 20x faster under certain conditions. Only 3 servers were used instead of 30. The traffic rate capacity was doubled. The app worked 2-10 times faster on the client side. LinkedIn believes the use of Node.js was a huge success for them.

2. Netflix:

Netflix is one of the world’s largest online media streaming providers that allows customers to watch varieties of award-winning TV shows, movies, documentaries and many more. It delivers almost 7 billion hours of video to nearly 50 million customers in more than 60 countries per quarter.

Image credit: Mark O’Neill 

Traditionally, Netflix used Java on server side and Javascript on the client side. It was very difficult for the developers to be proficient in two different languages and they were doing things twice for everything including data access, rendering, debugging etc. As a result, the company was slowing down. Node.js has a lot of open sources modules that can be used quickly and get better tracking. From 40+ minutes of startup time to one minute, there was a whole new level of performance improvement. The written code could be re-used and was highly scalable. Also, the application load was improved by 70%, according to the company reports. A single page app where full page rendering was easier after they moved to Node.js. 

3. NASA:

Image credit: bin blog

During spacewalk in 2013, Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano had water leaking into his helmet. On further investigations, NASA found the reason was due to the unreliable data that was hosted in several locations. So, their own end-to-end data system was decided to be built. This was made possible through Node.js. After that incident, Nasa constructed an enterprise-scale architecture powered by Node.js and everything was transferred to cloud. Also, a web API linked these environments. Here, for everything, database was used. This led to the reduction of the access time by 300%. Adapting Node.js was the ideal choice as the procedural steps decreased from 28 to 7.

4. WordPress:

WordPress is an online, most powerful blogging and website content management system. Calypso is an editor which could be used to manage the content after Automattic’s Jetpack plugins are enabled. Calypso,an admin interface for WordPress is built using Node.js, express server, Reactjs, redux and many other wonderful libraries of Javascript. 

Image credit: wordpress.org

In answer to what wordpress.com would look like if it was started building today, Calypso was started as a prototype which could define the new WordPress.com. Calypso is the new front-end for WordPress.com. It is built for reading, writing and managing all of WordPress sites into one place. It has a beautiful design of WordPress dashboard that uses a single-page web application powered by the WordPress.com Rest API. 

During the early days,  Automattic, a company behind wordpress.com had just acquired cloudup which is an API- powered file sharing tool built using JavaScript. Cloudup had a solid, maintainable and scalable path that made WordPress.com completely Javascript based and API powered. 

With Calypso and Node.js, an end user can expect a better experience with new WordPress which includes features like instant page loads, real-time changes, responsive sites. Calypso is a huge evolutionary development for WordPress. Although PHP template files won’t disappear anytime soon this is the beginning of wordpress.com to migrate away from PHP to Javascript.

5. Paypal:

Paypal is one of the largest online payment services that support fund transfer of individuals and businesses. It is mostly used for money transactions which involves sending or receiving payments, purchasing or selling any kinds of goods or services. It can also be used to make or receive donations and exchange cash.

Image credit: Fortune

 Paypal was among one of the first companies that took the risk to use Node.js and make a difference when Node.js was not so popular language. They were using Java on the server side and javascript on the browser side. During the beginning, Paypal tried to develop a prototype using both Node and java for which it hired a team of 5 developers and a team of 2 developers. After which they found out an application in half time using Node.js compared to java. Also, the node app was written in 33% fewer lines of code and with 40% fewer files. 

After implementation, Paypal performed extremely well. The average response time declined by 35% which was noticeable by the users.

6. Medium :

Medium is free and open content platform for publishing learnings, thoughts, stories and tips and sharing them with a built-in audience. Medium has 25 million monthly readers and thousands of articles appear each week. Medium app servers are built with Node.js with Nginx accompanying it. They use clean framework for Node environment. 

Image credit: Medium

After using Node.js, they managed to speed up deployment times up to 15 minutes. While previously main app servers deployed 5 times a day, this rate was doubled. 

7. Trello:

Trello is one of the revolutionary project management tools that gives the virtual overview of what work is being carried out and who is working on it. Trello wanted to choose event-driven,non-blocking server that had the ability to hold many open connections for the instant propagation of updates. The entire process was facilitated by Node.js and Trello started moving in the right direction.

Image credit: Trello

Firstly Node.js was used for prototyping, then building a single-page application and finally tested to create a  mockup server. With all the arrangements, engineers were able to try things quickly and adjust the design. 

8. Walmart:

Walmart is the world’s largest retail chain which is also champion in the online e-commerce space. Walmart fought with memory leak for about 6 months. Rather than going with the tested and trending framework, Walmart chooses to get involved in a fairly new technology of that time; Nodejs. Walmart offered its client with new and more sophisticated features by re-engineering their mobile application using Node.js. This led to getting more accurate data from the client side.  Also, the asynchronous I/O mechanism along with its single thread event loop models has helped Walmart handle the concurrent request. 

Image credit: logomyway

Walmart uses Node.js to balance layer over the legacy APIs which helped in the creation of new APIs for Walmart and deploy them within hours. This significantly cut the release time.

9.  eBay:

eBay is multinational e-commerce which has about 170 million active users. It has always been flexible to adopt newer technologies. eBay had to maintain a huge number of live connection on the server for which they were looking for a high-intensity real-time application. They were in a requirement of the huge number of eBay specific services that would display a lot of information on the page. Node.js was the most appropriate solution that met those requirements. 

Image credit: wikimedia

eBay app on Node.js is an example of how the ability of live connections on servers were maintained. Technical deployment principle at ebay believes in Build once, deploy everywhere and automate the rest. Although only one project of ebay used Node.js at the beginning, now full transition features are available in Node.js. 

10. Uber:

Uber is an American online transportation network company that has expanded its operation in more than 60 countries and 600 cities worldwide. It is a famous platform for connecting the cab driver and customers through a mobile application. This mobile app has been engineered by several Node.js tools.

Image credit: dailydot

The number of uber users increased significantly after each month. This created the need for a highly scalable, trustworthy and stable system for both the drivers and customers.  Node.js provided the solution for uber to maintain a big amount of data in an efficient way. Now, the mobile app maintains more than 2 million remote procedure calls per second.Node.js offers fast code deployment and better error analysis. Node.js is ever updating with the open active open source community this has constantly improved the Uber mobile app.

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