What is Nile?
Nile is a Serverless Postgres for modern SaaS that virtualizes tenants to make it easy to achieve tenant isolation, user management, global tenant placement, tenant sharding, and many more SaaS capabilities. Nile has built primitives in standard Postgres to make it world-class for SaaS use cases while keeping the standard behavior of Postgres intact. It provides a fully integrated solution and still preserves the complete flexibility and extensibility of Postgres. At its core, Nile’s Postgres is a tenant or customer-aware serverless database (the first of its kind) that will significantly speed up SaaS application development, reduce cost, and enable developers to delight their customers.
Why do we exist?
The mission of Nile is to enable developers to accelerate the next billion modern SaaS applications. A world-class modern SaaS will have ten key traits. They will be customer-centric, highly secure, extremely low latency, data-intensive, real-time, intelligent, collaborative, globally accessible, collaborative, highly available, and beautiful. What we will build at Nile will help accomplish this and truly change the future of SaaS. Nile will deliver on this promise.
Why do you need Nile?
Nile focuses on six key value proposition that makes it the best database to start developing and scaling all SaaS applications. Nile provides built-in tenant virtualization within Postgres. A conceptual way to understand this is that a single Nile Postgres database comprises many smaller tenant databases. Nile abstracts this complexity to provide a straightforward and standard way to manage all the tenants. This enables things that were never possible before with building SaaS or were really hard to do right.
- Achieve tenant data isolation without any complex, buggy code or dealing with messy row-level security policies. Isolating each tenant's data is so basic yet hard to do. With Postgres being tenant-aware in Nile, this becomes straightforward. Also, performance isolation between tenants has always been one of the most complex problems in SaaS. The easiest approach is to provide a separate database for each tenant or customer. The downside to this approach is that it becomes operationally hard and cost-ineffective. The compute types and memory requirement has to be configured for each tenant database. In addition, all schema changes must be kept in sync with all the tenant databases. Also, deployments are much harder since rollouts need to be done to all the databases. Nile’s Postgres takes care of this since it understands tenant boundaries.
- User management (TBD)
- Global tenant placement. Today, all SaaS products are global products from day 1. This means they have customers from all across the globe. Customers want a low latency experience and are particular that their compliance needs around data locality are met. This has been traditionally hard without creating and managing separate databases for each location and, in some extreme cases, having separate DBs for each customer. This again creates all the challenges around operations, cost, and overhead to managing multiple databases. Nile provides the ability to locate specific tenants in different locations in the same database. It abstracts all the operational challenges and provides all the benefits of isolated tenant DBs. An extreme case is that it would be possible to place each tenant at the edge where the customers are.
- Instant customer dashboards. One of the common needs of SaaS is to understand the customer’s behavior at different levels of the stack. You typically want to understand business metrics, product metrics, and operational metrics for each customer to make insightful decisions and take quick actions. This is a technically hard problem that requires moving data from an OLTP system to an analytics product and reconciling customer data across multiple sources. Nile will provide a SaaS-focused dashboard out of the box since it is tenant-aware and enables quick business and product decisions.
- Full stack native AI experience. AI is revolutionizing the world today, and every SaaS company is looking into leveraging AI to transform the experience of their application fundamentally. There are huge challenges in achieving this today for SaaS companies. SaaS applications have domain and customer-specific data that needs to be trained, embeddings from LLMs must be stored securely and searched with low latency. They must also integrate with different model providers like OpenAI, Huggingface, or Replicate. Nile’s Postgres will help build chatbots and agents that are personalized for each customer or tenant and significantly reduce time to market by integrating end-to-end.
- Effortlessly elastic. Nile is serverless, scales to zero with no cold bootstrap time, and lets developers pay for what they use. It supports unlimited tenants, limitless connections, and millions of users. Nile’s Postgres abstracts machines and helps developers focus on their queries and core business logic.