Introducing the Textile Mobile SDK

mobile Feb 12, 2019

We’re proud to introduce the Textile Mobile SDK, an exciting open source toolkit that lets a developer embed IPFS in their mobile app, encrypt mobile data, request and distribute decentralized files, spin up new private storage for any of their users, plus much much more.

This first release is for all React Native app developers. We’ve got plans for an Obj-C and/or Java version in the works as well, so ping us on if you are dying for those SDKs!

React Native SDK

Open source and ready to install, our React Native SDK library will help you read, write, and share data over IPFS. Hash, encrypt and synchronize content addressable data across many users or services with ease. Let’s take a look at some of the SDK’s main features.

Brief rundown of the SDK

The SDK provides you with a Textile Node running on every client device. We’ve been building our mobile node to power everything you see in Textile Photos, from account creation, to file encryption, to distributed shared tables. Inside the node is a fully operational IPFS instance, right on your mobile device.

  1. IPFS. The Mobile SDK makes it easier than ever to get a performant IPFS peer running on any mobile device. It’s built on the go-ipfs library and optimized for the mobile environment (think offline first, light on network activity, lower battery use, etc). Use IPFS while being as friendly as possible to your users’ data and battery restrictions.
  2. Encryption & Key Management. The Textile Node includes a local data wallet on every device, so your app can encrypt data and keep track of known private keys easily for any data stored on IPFS.
  3. Distributed Feeds. Textile’s Threads protocol is a core component of the SDK, allowing your app to share essentially distributed tables that one or many clients can update and keep in sync. We use Threads (aka groups) to allow groups of users to share photos in Textile Photos.
  4. REST-like Design. Content addressable data + schemas shared over distributed tables (Threads).
  5. Remote services. The SDK easily pairs with network based services over decentralized protocols and encrypted communication. Try it out with our server technology, custom IPFS services, and projects like Pinata.
  6. So much more. Hop on our developer Slack channel or come meet us at EthDenver if you want to learn more, share your ideas, or get a demo!

Want to see how easy it is?

npm install @textile/react-native-sdk --save
react-native link @textile/react-native-sdk

It’s pretty much that easy :). Watch this video of a team demo I gave that takes it a bit further:

Example React Native App

For those of you who want to skip the documentation and start tinkering, we built an open source example app that shows you just how easy it is to get Textile & IPFS running in a mobile app, plus how to encrypt and add a photo effortlessly.

Support & Documentation

For a “getting started” crash course, check out the react-native-sdk repo’s README. The SDK is moving quickly as we pull in some early feedback, but already you should find getting started takes just a few minutes. You can also read more extensively about the Textile technology both in other blog posts here or on our technical wiki. If you hit a roadblock, or just want to learn from others, feel free to join our developer slack channel, it’s starting to buzz with people cracking open the Textile code.

Build build build!

We’ve got a billion ideas for how you can use Textile and what you could build, from decentralized link sharing, to light-weight decentralized content clients, chat apps, and clones of Textile Photos (seriously, we encourage it!). We’re excited to release the beta version of our mobile SDK in time for #EthDenver and so will be testing out how the SDK can help create new content for, and in, DApps & Smart Contracts. Give us a shout if you’ll be there!

It’s a great time to get involved and build an app. Let us know what you come up with, we’re always here to help.

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