NEW YORK—MongoDB, the company behind the popular open-source, eponymous NoSQL database, has undergone a rebranding of sorts, in that it now positions its flagship technology as the database for not just big, but giant ideas.
At its Launchpad event held at the American Museum of Natural History here Sept. 24, MongoDB CEO Dev Ittycheria said the database market is hitting a tipping point where MongoDB is poised for growth—particularly against legacy database management system (DBMS) vendors whose sales patterns are “unsustainable.”
Ittycheria said he believes the future will be built on giant ideas largely based on software and data, with MongoDB opening up that world of software and data to innovators of all sizes, industries and geographies.
“Over the last 12 months we’ve accumulated a roster of customers that is second to none,” he said. Speaking of giant ideas, “Starting a company in New York City to go after the legacy database companies is a giant idea,” Ittycheria said, noting that MongoDB had to be more nimble and innovative than its competition. Beyond giant ideas, the company’s tagline is that its technology is “for startups that want to be enterprises and enterprises that want to be startups.”
For instance, x.ai, a startup that produces an artificial intelligence (AI)-powered personal assistant that schedules meetings for users, turned to MongoDB to support its natural language processing, supervised learning, analytics and email communication services.
“The schema flexibility and DevOps simplicity of MongoDB make it the best database for launching and scaling startups,” said Alex Poon, COO and founder of x.ai, in a statement. “MongoDB was fundamental to our success early on, when we were changing the data model weekly, and remains so today, with our focus on continuous integration through weekly sprints. Without MongoDB, we would not be able to model such complex data for such a sophisticated solution so easily.”
At the event, MongoDB announced that Urban Outfitters, the lifestyle specialty retail company that includes the Anthropologie, BHLDN, Free People, Terrain and Urban Outfitters brands, uses MongoDB for its e-commerce platform.
Urban Outfitters is building innovative customer experiences and chose MongoDB for its flexibility and performance, said Rob Frieman, director of e-commerce at Urban Outfitters, who spoke at the Launchpad event. With MongoDB, the retailer can quickly design and release innovative apps, while delivering a rich, consistent customer experience. In addition to its flexibility and performance, MongoDB provides high availability.
“As we looked to position our platform for growth, we wanted to select a product and partner with a company aligned with our goals,” Frieman said. “With MongoDB, we’re using a product proven to support our brands’ performance needs throughout the year and especially at peak loads during the holidays. We can develop new features, adapt to changing requirements and spend more time delivering value.”
MongoDB is a key component in Urban Outfitters’ omni-channel strategy, enabling the retailer to move ahead across a variety of initiatives, including in-store pickup and personalization, to build a seamless customer experience.
“MongoDB is quickly becoming the backbone of the retail sector, inspiring e-commerce apps and ideas that were previously impossible,” Ittycheria said. “Offering the combination of flexibility, high performance and no downtime, MongoDB continues to be the answer to modern retail requirements for e-commerce giants like Urban Outfitters.”
Several large retailers—including Otto, The Gap, Chico’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Gilt, eBay and Under Armour—rely on MongoDB to create personalized, omni-channel customer experiences that drive revenue.
MongoDB also announced that Sprinklr, which provides an enterprise social technology platform, uses MongoDB to help solve big data challenges. Founded in 2009, Sprinklr was built on the premise that the rise of social would force brands to reimagine the way they interact with customers across all touch points, from customer service to recruiting and marketing. Today, Sprinklr provides enterprises with a social platform that enables employees across the front office to collaborate and more effectively engage with customers using one centralized system.
MongoDB Empowers ‘Giant Ideas’ for Innovators
“In the age of always-connected and empowered consumers, we’re building an entirely new class of enterprise software that was designed from the ground up to solve a challenge that no one has ever faced,” said Murali Swaminathan, executive vice president of client success and engineering at Sprinklr, who spoke at MongoDB Launchpad. “We deal with petabytes of social data and operate at a global scale on behalf of the world’s most respected brands. Working with MongoDB, we’ve been able to consistently take on and overcome the new and highly complex engineering hurdles necessary to meet the rapidly evolving needs of our customers.”
According to Gartner, 89 percent of companies will compete primarily on the basis of customer experience by 2016. Sprinklr enables brands to manage those experiences across social channels and branded Websites through a “social operating system” that integrates with an organization’s existing tech infrastructure and enables employees in traditionally siloed business units like marketing, customer care and sales to engage with customers through unified data and workflows.
On behalf of Sprinklr and its more than 1,000 customers, MongoDB stores social activity across more than 20 channels including Facebook posts, tweets and YouTube uploads. Sprinklr’s MongoDB deployment handles more than 3 million transactions per minute and has supported the company’s rollout of at least one major functionality and more than 100 new features each month, Swaminathan said.
“Today’s complex big data problems require modern solutions,” said Ittycheria in a statement. “By speeding up development and simplifying operations to ensure scale and performance that companies like Sprinklr demand, MongoDB delivers a sophisticated solution that addresses big data requirements while inspiring new ideas for applications major brands can’t live without.”
In other news, MongoDB announced a new app that enables users to take MongoDB University courses on their smartphones. Now available for free in the Apple App Store for iPhone and iPad, the app allows students to stream course videos, complete quizzes and prepare for MongoDB certification exams. The MongoDB University iOS app also offers the ability to download course videos for offline viewing in environments where bandwidth is limited.
“The idea of the office is changing,” said Andrew Erlichson, vice president of engineering at MongoDB. “Developers are working not only in well-connected central locations, but also while in transit—on trains, planes and buses—where connectivity is sometimes sporadic or expensive. The availability of a MongoDB University mobile app enables developers to take courses and learn how to develop on MongoDB wherever they are.”
The MongoDB University app syncs with students’ existing MongoDB University accounts so that they may move seamlessly between the mobile experience and the Web throughout the course. To facilitate preparation for MongoDB certification exams, the app also provides students with the ability to mark their favorite lesson videos and quizzes for later review.
MongoDB University hosts six massive online open courses (MOOCs), with offerings for both developers and database administrators (DBAs). Courses consist of a sequence of chapters, each on a major MongoDB topic. Chapters are divided into a series of short lesson videos and quizzes. At the end of each chapter, students complete several lab exercises to provide them with hands-on experience on the subject matter. At the conclusion of each course, students can optionally take certification exams to become MongoDB Certified Professionals.