How to boost the quality of your Android apps

How to boost the quality of your Android apps

February 25th, 2013 By: Stefan von Gagern
Today Developer Garden introduces DG App Monitor, a brand-new service that helps you monitoring your Android Apps. Let’s look at the use cases, features and benefits for developers.
How to boost the quality of your Android Apps

In a recent article we focused on Android development. We called it at the same time the “hottest platform” with around 75 percent of all smartphones world-wide running it, but also showed some reasons why it can be the “developers nightmare”. Everybody knows that fragmentation can be a huge mess on Android and it is no question that help is welcome. Today Developer Garden introduces a new service called App Monitor at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, that promises to boost the quality of your Android applications. Let’s check how App Monitor works.

Testing and bugfixing sucks

It is no secret that testing on the Android platform can be very hard before you submit your app. But another aspect is often overlooked: When your app is available of course you still have to work on it. But not only on updates, offering new features. Also on bugfixes to ensure quality. Especially when users are complaining about bugs, crashes, battery drainage or other issues. When you get some 1-star ratings it’s time to get things done, fix the problems and boost the quality of the app.

But on Android it can sometimes be nearly impossible to figure out where to start: Your app might work perfectly on one device but be buggy on another. Or it can run well on a device but be affected and led to crashing by another app. Or drain the battery.

Use real-time in-depth data instead of guessing

The DG App Monitor Quality Dashboard gives a deep insight to the devices and use experience of your audience.

Instead of panicking or randomly testing you now can use a tool that gives you a solid base for you are testing and quality assurance. App Monitor is a web-based service that provides an Application Quality Dashboard.

At a glance you see statistics, telling you which devices are used, what can cause problems like crashes, slowness, non-responding apps or exceptions occur. You can find out in which cases using your app might lead to high battery consumption, memory problems or system crashes. The Quality Dashboard helps you to identify quickly common sources of errors and optimize customers’ experience.

What about performance and privacy?

You don’t have to worry about collecting private data from your app users. App Monitor was built with focus on data privacy and anonymity. And the second important fact: App Monitor has minimal impact on your customers’ experience – it won’t drain the battery, or be a problem for the users CPU or RAM.

App Monitor collects only technical sensor information - no personal data about the user is gathered. All information is both encrypted and anonymized - no reference to information belonging to a specific customer. All data is aggregated in Telekom's data centers - and no other place..

See the dashboard in action

The best way to understand the power of App Monitor is to see the heart and soul of it, the Application Quality Dashboard in action. Developer Garden's Developer Evangelist Richard Süselbeck presents you a demo at YouTube. Richard illustrates in a webcast, how to start working with the Application Dashboard, in which you find all the statistical data and in-depth you need to help understanding exactly what caused the problem.

See the Application Quality Dashboard in action:

The 10 minute demo shows you the power of the statistics, which must be a dream come true for Android developers. For example you can get a list of all devices running your app, devices that recently installed your app and much more. For every single device you can see the top three problems and versions of the Android version of the specific device. A malfunctions-tab gives an overview of all errors occurring on a device, providing some filter options. In a versions tab you can break down the fixes according to the updates of your app.

Be sure that Developer Garden keeps you posted with new webcasts as soon as new features of App Monitor will be dropping. On top Richard will add soon some new demo videos about hints & tricks how to get the best results out of the Dashboard.

How do you start?

For using App monitor you need to register at Developer Garden, activate and config the service. After signing an agreement on Commissioned Data Processing and send it via post back to us, you get access to the App Monitor SDK. Using App Monitor basically means only inserting some code via copy and paste.

App Monitor is designed to be used as a testing tool for pre and post launch: Since the access to all the devices is limited pre launch, you get more quality insights after launch. After launch the data helps you boosting the quality.

This video shows you how to get started:

Free version available

Using a free license you can enjoy some free features and test the Quality Dashboard. If you upgrade to the standard account to use the full features you pay 40€ per month. Here you get some details about pricing.

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