Top 7 Frameworks to Build a Web API in Scala

Scala is a powerful language and has become a favorite among many developers. However, a language is only a starting point. The core language will cover not every function.

To make Scala even better, there are some amazing frameworks. Today we will be looking at 7 powerful frameworks that Scala uses in App Development UK. We will discuss each one and give you some details.

The best framework for your project is the one that matches your requirements. Consider these cues, then decide what works best for your project.

Top 7 Frameworks to Build a Web API in Scala:

1. Play framework:

Play Framework, an open-source Scala API framework, was released for the first time in 2007. It is currently being developed by Lightbend and Singularity, as well as its community of user developers.

Frameworks to Build a Web API
play framework

The framework’s core functionality is built upon JVM and related libraries to create RESTful apps. LinkedIn, Samsung’s IoT Artik platform, and Coursera, an education site, are prominent websites that use it. Play 2.6, which has superseded Play 1 at the time of writing, is the current version.

Benefits:

  • It is intimately related to JVM, and Java developers will find it easy to use.
  • Comprehensive support for many toolsets, IDE systems, and other technologies.
  • It is entirely based on functional programming concepts and promotes API-first RESTful design practices.
  • Play 2 allows remote calls to be made simultaneously. It works well with WebSockets and other server-centric approaches.
  • It provides a variety of support structures to facilitate asset compilation, format handling, and database integrations.
  • Play is open-source, providing adoptees greater security and a codebase consistently reviewed.

Drawbacks:

  • While many excellent plugins are available in the community, their stability and utility are not always assured.
  • Play 2 uses the SBT build method. It’s powerful, but some are concerned about wildcard imports and implicit use. This makes integration and infrastructure development extremely difficult.

2. Finch:

Finch is a modular system that combines HTTP primitives to create Scala http framework APIs. It is an extensible, modular and customizable framework that is centered on the concept of composability. Finagle is the foundation for Finch, a layer of functional blocks that can be used to build composable HTTP APIs. Its mission is simple and robust HTTP primitives close to the Finagle API.

Benefits:

  • Finch uses functional blocks to create its framework. It is highly modular.
  • It does have some robust HTTP primitives that make it ideal for testing and rapid development. Finch is an excellent fit for startups and smaller projects.
  • Because of the program’s structure, it can be used quickly and is highly functional for many systems.

Drawbacks:

  • It is structured to allow for minimal implementation and more implementation and development.
  • Not considered a complete-stack solution.

3. Akka HTTP:

Akka HTTP modules implement a complete server- and client-side Scala HTTP framework stack over the top of the Akka stream and Akka–actor.

Akka HTTP is Scala’s highly modular and robust implementation. It was designed with the idea of development taking place within a “frame”, where pre-made choices and functionalities guide development.

Frameworks to Build a Web API
Akka HTTP

Akka HTTP was not a framework. It provides many tools for development but does not force any developer to make choices. It’s not a web platform but rather a toolkit that can be used to provide and consume HTTP-based services.

Although interaction with a browser can be done, it is not the main focus of Akka HTTP.

Benefits:

  • Akka HTTP’s most significant advantage is its integration with Akka functionality. It supports many systems, including Akka. They can run parallel commands and perform advanced computation processing.
  • Akka HTTP is supported by many contributors and developers working under Lightbend. It also has excellent documentation and an easy-to-understand support center.

Drawbacks:

  • Akka HTTP is slower than the other implementations on the list. As such, it scales slowly and is already trailing the pack.
  • Lightbend is an excellent organization. However, getting locked into one vendor can cause concern for multiple organizations. Vendor lock-in can be costly and difficult to break, so it is important to consider this before you commit.

4. Chaos:

Mesosphere’s Chaos framework is available. It was designed explicitly for RESTful development to address the developer’s past experiences with Dropwizard, Twitter Commons and the Java Framework space. They created Chaos as a simpler solution to Play’s frameworks.

Chaos (Greek: Khaos, or khaos) is the state that precedes the creation of the universe. Chaos (the framework) precedes the creation of a universe full of services.

Benefits:

  • Chaos was created to be simple and familiar to Scala users.
  • The libraries it uses are all well-tested and supported. 
  • There is a lot of documentation and knowledge bases to help you test, iterate and develop.

Drawbacks:

  • Chaos is another lightweight framework that glues libraries together and then calls it a day. (Jersey Guava, Jetty Jackson and Coda Hale’s Metrics). It does some exciting things, but this approach fundamentally limits it.
  • According to its creators, it does one thing very well: it runs REST. The default libraries in Chaos may not be the best for you if you aren’t building a RESTful server or have to integrate some peculiarities by design.

5. Lift:

Lift is highly secure and scalable. The lift addressed security concerns such as code injection and cross-site scripting. Lift is a highly safe choice for the Scala http framework that is highly secure. Lift is described as being secure, developer-centric and designer-friendly. It also offers modularity, scalable, interaction, and modular.

Benefits:

  • Lift is built around security, starting at the most basic level. 
  • Lift encourages code-wide security for standard implementations through form value obfuscation, prepared statements, and other techniques.
  • The lift is speedy. This is often its main selling point. Its database queries are clear and concise. Calls are answered quickly.

Drawbacks:

  • Although the Lift community is smaller than other options on this list, it has been around for a long time, so there is plenty of documentation.
  • However, this documentation is not always up-to-date; even if it is, it isn’t always the most useful. This is not to say that there isn’t good documentation. There is just as much good and evil. That is part of it.
  • Lift’s nature was quite stateful at its beginnings. This is still evident in the current codebase. A scaling lift can be tricky and may cause issues with data transfer, serialization, sharing, and routing requests.

6. BlueEyes:

Scala API framework Web 3.0 features asynchronous architecture, high performance, scalability and a functional, composable design.

BlueEyes is a Web 3.0 framework for Scala, focusing on speed and usability. BlueEyes is lightweight by design, which makes it ideal for rapid development and agile web services.

Benefits:

  • BlueEyes is highly modular and scalable. It is specifically designed for high-performance applications that require modularity.
  • It is asynchronous and has the advantage of being strong, almost purpose-built.
  • This is an excellent choice for applications with special requirements or standards.

Drawbacks:

  • BlueEyes doesn’t support server-side generation HTML, CSS, or JavaScript. It does not even serve static files. Its sole purpose is to create RESTful services that clients can use. This sounds great, but an external plugin or solution will be required if you need that functionality.
  • BlueEyes can be used in asynchronous mode. BlueEyes may not be the best choice if your application requires synchronous functionality.

7. Slick:

Slick is a modern framework that focuses on database querying and access. Although it functions the same way as the Scala collections system, Slick allows for greater control over access and how data is transferred. The Slick Documentation explains that it allows you to access stored data as if using Scala collection while giving you complete control over the time and data transfer. Scala can be used to write database queries instead of SQL. This allows you to benefit from the compile-time safety, compositionality, and static checking of Scala. Slick includes an extensible query compiler that can generate code for different backends.

Benefits:

  • Slick connects to many databases and sources. It has an extensible set of support structures. 
  • This is an excellent tool for applications that need to tie into multiple data points from different sources.
  • Slick also provides a highly extensible query compiler that allows you to join Slick-based applications into many backend systems.

Drawbacks:

  • Slick offers many advantages that make it stand out from other options. However, it is focused on an asynchronous design philosophy, which may not be necessary for specific applications.
  • It supports many databases, but poor performance has been observed in MySQL implementations because of the MySQL database system’s eccentricities.
  • There is a steep learning curve due to the heavy emphasis on DBIO, which allows for extensive database integration. It may not be the best option for novice or experienced app development UK companies.

Conclusion:

There are many Scala frameworks available in the ecosystem. It isn’t easy to pick just 8. There’s a good chance there is a framework for you, regardless of your project requirements. There’s a good chance it doesn’t. However, there is a good chance that a framework allows you to create modular support for your requirements. This is the power of extensibility in frameworks and allows for greater manipulation and extension.

What do you think? Which Scala framework is your favorite? For more assistance, contact O2SOF, the best app development UK Company. We may include it in the future if we haven’t included it on the list. Let us know by commenting below!

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