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Analytics help developers give mobile apps a tune-up

Delivering enterprise mobile applications to employees is a complex endeavor, but some organizations are turning to in-app analytics to help with the crucial final step: ensuring the long-term success of mobile apps.

In-app analytics is an emerging and invaluable part of application lifecycle management. Think of mobile apps like a car. You research cars that will fit your specific needs, and you might take one or two out on a test drive. You spend a considerable amount of money on the car and expect that you and others will put it to use for the next several years. It only makes sense to take that car in for a tune-up every once in a while, to make sure it’s still running at peak performance.

The process of building and managing enterprise mobile apps over time is similar. IT shops identify, develop and test applications, providing a secure mobile environment that allows users to get work done with managed apps. The final step is to collect and analyze in-app data, and then tune the application to maintain a good user experience that will keep workers coming back.

“If you’re going to build an app, don’t you want to know how it’s performing?” asked Philippe Winthrop, global mobility evangelist at IT services provider CSC, in this month’s Modern Mobility.

Putting in-app analytics data to good use is a challenge in itself, and not all companies deploy enough apps to need those analytics in the first place. But those organizations that do rely heavily on mobile apps can reap the benefits: In-app analytics make it easier to identify bugs in applications and track how employees are using apps. Those insights can help developers and IT admins decide which apps to update first and how to modify them.

“There is no such thing as version one-and-done of an enterprise mobile app,” Winthrop said. “You’re always going to be iterating.”

There are plenty of analytics offerings out there. Mobile app development vendor Kony, for example,, includes in-app event tracking in the software development kit for its Mobile Fabric mobile backend as a service platform, so developers can access analytics for any apps connected to the platform. Other in-app analytics vendors include Localytics, Crittercism, Appsee and Crashlytics.

To learn more about how in-app analytics improve the long-term prospects of enterprise mobile apps, read editor in chief Colin Steele’s cover story in the October issue of Modern Mobility.

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