Hosting for Droid apps

I know about web servers, but I have also heard of mobile servers and I know very little about mobile. What is the difference? We want to be able to send and receive programatically generated bytestreams, text messages, maybe xml and other things between a user operated mobile phone app, and a none user operated phone app and a central server. Any recommendations on what type of hosting service we would need and why would be appreciated. Thanks.
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BobHavertyComhAsked:
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aindelicatoCommented:
Pretty sure the server you are hosting on makes no difference.  Its the backend software you'l be running on said server that matters.

You may want to go with a host that gives you colo type access, rather than a webserver that is running lets say CPanel.
BobHavertyComhAuthor Commented:
Hi aindelicato, thanks for your reply. I'm sorry, but i do not know exactly what you mean by colo and CPanel. I only have experience with IIS. Would we send all message via http? or use some other protocol? And does that make a difference in the type of web server we would need?
aindelicatoCommented:
I believe most web bases SMS texting is simple TCP traffic, even just email really as the providers assign an email address to all devices... ##########@vztext.com

See this site for a list of all SMS gateways..

http://www.emailtextmessages.com/


CPanel is a webhost management system, which many web hosting companies use.  It gives customers access to control their websites, but in a confined environment.
http://cpanel.net/

Colo (Co-Location) is a term used when you send your own servers to a datacenter and they simple house them and provide power and connectivity, but you have full control of that server.  

These days it is cheaper to spin up a cloud offered by Rackspace, Amazon or Microsoft and achieve the same results without buying/shipping/maintaining a physical server.
Scott FellDeveloper & EE ModeratorCommented:
> I have also heard of mobile servers and I know very little about mobile. What is the difference?

I think what you mean is you have heard about mobile platforms.  Some are open and some are proprietary.   Really, it is hosting your data in the cloud and being ready for large numbers.  

If you go out and get a small dedicated service for $200 to $300 per month and run sql server on that same server, there is only so much data and web traffic you can serve at one time.  If you have 50,000 or 100,000 unique users per month you would be fine.  Actually, if the site was more static, you could do that with shared hosting at 90% less.  

Once you start getting into requiring more data and the potential for 100,000  users in a day all requiring a lot of data, your small dedicated hosting platform may have some issue.  

The mobile platforms such as are designed for the type of usage and programming apps require as well as things like push.
https://developers.google.com/appengine/?csw=1 
http://aws.amazon.com/mobile-apps/
http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/overview/application-hosting/

There are also options to create your app on do it  yourself plat forms.
https://app.rhohub.com/
https://www.yapp.us/ 

If you build something for appengine, it will be much different then building for amazon. Where traditional webhosting, if you use sql server at  host1 and want to move to host2 there is little if anything you need to do in your coding.  When you code for a platform, you probably can't go from one platform to another easily.

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