PaaS Partner Community

  • July 23, 2015

Performance Study – REST vs SOAP for Mobile Applications by Steven Davelaar

Juergen Kress
PaaS Partner Adoption


To build functional and performant mobile apps, the back-end data services need to be optimized for mobile consumption. RESTful web services using JSON as payload format are widely considered as the best architectural choice for integration between mobile apps and back-end systems. Nevertheless, we have seen many customers of Oracle’s Mobile Application Framework (MAF) consuming SOAP web services in their mobile apps. One reason this is happening might be the nice declarative support in MAF/JDeveloper where you can easily create a SOAP-based data control through a wizard and build your pages using drag and drop. However, this wizard is only intended for really simple SOAP services. It cannot handle all XSD types, nor can it handle more complex, nested payloads. One way to work around these limitations is to process the SOAP payload programmatically in Java, but this is not a trivial task to do. While most of the issues around consuming more complex web services can ultimately be solved, this article explains why you should really abandon SOAP and go for REST-JSON services for one simple reason: performance. The differences in performance are staggering and get worse as the mobile device gets older.

Main Article

This articles discusses the results of a test conducted by Oracle’s A-Team to compare the performance of REST-JSON, REST-XML and SOAP service calls in MAF. We will first discuss the test set-up, then discuss the test results and we will end with a discussion of the options you have if you are currently consuming SOAP web services in your MAF application.

Test Set-Up

We have created an ADF Business Components (ADF BC) application that uses the HR schema to return a list of departments, including a nested list of employees for each department. So, the payload returned consists of 27 departments with 107 nested employee records.Each department row has 4 attributes, each employee row has 11 attributes.
In JSON format this payload is 26.2 KB, in XML format the payload is 77.3 KB in size (whitespace and carriage returns have been removed). Read the complete article here.

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