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The data layer for hyperscale, resilient and globally available applications—based on open-source Apache CouchDB
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What is IBM Cloudant?

A fully managed, distributed database optimized for heavy workloads and fast-growing web and mobile apps, IBM® Cloudant® is available as an IBM Cloud® service with a 99.99% SLA. Cloudant elastically scales throughput and storage, and its API and replication protocols are compatible with Apache CouchDB for hybrid or multicloud architectures.

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How it's used

Serverless web app and API In this tutorial, you’ll create a serverless web application by hosting static website content on GitHub Pages and implementing the application back end, using IBM Cloud Functions. View the tutorial

Mobile app with serverless In this tutorial, you'll learn how to use IBM Cloud Functions along with cognitive and data services to build a serverless back end for a mobile app.

Find anomalies in IoT data This tutorial shows how to set up an IoT device and gather data in the IBM Watson IoT® Platform. Create visualizations and use advanced ML services to analyze historical data and detect anomalies.

Open hybrid multicloud This tutorial shows how to pair the API and powerful replication protocol of Cloudant with Apache CouchDB in a hybrid cloud environment. View the tutorial

Cloudant details Serverless

Instantly deploy an instance, create databases and independently scale throughput capacity and data storage to meet your application requirements.


Encrypt all data, with optional user-defined encryption key management through IBM Key Protect, and integrate with IBM Identity and Access Management.

Global availability

Get continuous availability as Cloudant distributes data across availability zones and 6 regions for app performance and disaster recovery requirements.

Supported programming languages

Mobile for Android and iOS

The Cloudant Sync library can store, index and query local JSON data on a mobile device and synchronize data between devices—all controlled by your app.


Java-cloudant is the official Cloudant NoSQL database for IBM Cloud® library for Java™. Get info on installing the library, plus details and examples.


Nodejs-cloudant is the official Cloudant NoSQL database library for Node.js.


A supported library for working with Cloudant NoSQL database by using Python is available.


A supported library called SwiftCloudant is available for working with the Cloudant NoSQL database. Installed using cocoapods, it’s an early release version.

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Frequently asked questions

Get answers to the most commonly asked questions about this product.

Cloudant handles software and hardware provisioning, management and scaling, and support. You'll receive high availability and elastic scaling of the hardware as your provisioned throughput capacity needs change. Learn about the other benefits of database as a service (DBaaS).


Document data stores are represented in JSON, where each document is itself a complex data structure. Documents can contain nested structures of various data types, and users can query these structures, retrieving or updating the document, or portions of it, without locking down the database. Documents are stored and retrieved through a unique primary key.

JSON’s appeal stems partly from its schema, which can rapidly evolve without admin intervention. JSON offers an elegant model for persisting Java or JavaScript objects due to its affinity with JavaScript—with no need for "heavyweights" such as OpenJPA or Hibernate to build a data-layer solution. Storing a JSON document to represent a real object is fairly intuitive.

While Cloudant is API-compatible with Apache CouchDB, unlike CouchDB, Cloudant has layered additional open-source technologies for full text search and geospatial indexing capabilities. Both share a common replication protocol, so you can synchronize copies of your Cloudant data to a remote CouchDB instance—or vice versa—with a click. Explore the differences.

Offline-first architecture means building an app without an internet connection; the architecture lets you interact with your app without connectivity. Using Cloudant Mobile Sync, mobile apps can collect and read data when the network is unavailable. Once the connection is established, the data will sync with Cloudant. Cloudant also works with Hoodie and PouchDB.

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