Academic journal article Informatica Economica

Web Services in Mobile Applications

Academic journal article Informatica Economica

Web Services in Mobile Applications

Article excerpt

Information and communication technologies are designed to support and anticipate the continuing changes of the information society, while outlining new economic, social and cultural dimensions. We see the growth of new business models whose aim is to remove traditional barriers and improve the value of goods and services. Information is a strategic resource and its manipulation raises new problems for all entities involved in the process. Information and communication technologies should be a stable support in managing the flow of data and support the integrity, confidentiality and availability. Concepts such as eBusiness, eCommerce, Software as a Service, Cloud Computing and Social Media are based on web technologies consisting of complex languages, protocols and standards, built around clientserver architecture. One of the most used technologies in mobile applications are the Web Services defined as an application model supported by any operating system able to provide certain functionalities using Internet technologies to promote interoperability between various applications and platforms. Web services use HTTP, XML, SSL, SMTP and SOAP, because their stability has proven over the years. Their functionalities are highly variable, with Web services applications exchange type, weather, arithmetic or authentication services. In this article we will talk about SOAP and REST architectures for web services in mobile applications and we will also provide some practical examples based on Android platform.

Keywords: Mobile Web Services, Mobile Applications, SOA, SOAP, REST

1 Introduction

The distributed computing systems become more and more important in the new world dominated by the Information Technologies. This has resulted in recent standardization effort of distributed computing architecture, which is known as Service Oriented Architecture (SOA). The main component of this architecture is the Web Service. Some of the challenges in implementing the SOA architecture are maintainability, reliability, and security [1],

In the specialized literature we can find several articles [2], [3], [4] that address the issue of distributed architectures and web services in areas such as education, health and business. In fact, Web services are a solution for the integration of distributed information systems, autonomous, heterogeneous and selfadaptable to the context. Although there are similarities between Web Services and Web sites, we mention three notable differences between these technologies:

* websites have generally a friendly interface to communicate with the user and the opposite we have web services that do not require a graphical user interface;

* if Web sites are designed to facilitate interaction with their users, web services will only exchange data with other applications;

* websites must be accessible using browsers while web services can adapt to several environments or devices.

An application built on web services architecture can have several roles; it can be both the consumer and the service provider or just register whose role is to keep the web service description. The Service Provider is the person or organization that provides access to a web service in order to meet certain requirements. The consumer (Service Requester) is the entity that needs this service and meets a register known as the Discovery Service Agency or Broker who will make the connection between the two components [5],

In this paper we intend to present a review of the main architectures based on web services and we also provide an application implementation which can be used in the industry of telecommunication.

2 The Components of the Web Services Eco-System

According to some authors [6], web services were initially mainly intended to engage in dynamic business-to-business (B2B) interactions with services deployed on behalf of other enterprises or business entities. Broad interest in standardization/customization efforts was aimed at reducing the necessary user interaction. …

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