How to update the iOS application data and view it on a web page

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First time post here, so forgive me for any bad etiquette/format.

I will preface by saying:

I have (over the last few months) been developing an iOS app for work. To be more specific, I am developing an inventory app to track bar inventory (liquor, beer, wine, etc). I can give more specifics on request if needed. I have most of the functionality done, only a couple more things I would like to implement. Eventually I will be porting it to Android as well.

At the moment, I have the model objects being archived to the local filesystem for saving and loading of data. However, my goal would be to database the model objects with the ability to display the information on a webpage. My logic is that no matter where the user is, he/she will be able to sign in to a service using a username and password, and view correctly formatted current/past inventories online. This is to allow the ability for a bartender to record the inventory, and have the bar manager view the inventory instances without having to have the physical device that recorded the inventory in his/her possession.

So here is my question:

Without being too general, what kind of service would I need to pull this off? I have a good amount of relevant front-end experience, specifically with iOS, Objective-C, HTML and CSS. However, I have ZERO experience on the back-end. I have researched around the internet, and I am aware of things such as cloud databases, web hosting and MySQL, etc. However, I cannot seem to find a definitive answer without asking my specific question. I suppose I would just like to be pointed in the right direction before investing money and time into a service that may prove useless to my cause.

Any resources and help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!


There's not a definitive answer and you have a lot of options.

For me, the simplest is to set up a server with a database incorporated (mysql for example) and with a web service (written in PHP for example) that manages the database and queries on that.

Online you can find tons of guide on how to write a script in PHP that manages a database: http://www.freewebmasterhelp.com/tutorials/phpmysql/2

For the iOS part you can follow also this guide: http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/software-engineer/create-your-own-web-service-for-an-ios-app-part-one/

Good luck!