Developers – How Will You Leverage Analytics for Your BlackBerry 10 Games and Apps?

Comments

One of the most critical elements of creating a great app or game is the ability to analyse what your users are doing, and be able to respond and iterate accordingly. Are a lot of users getting stuck with a particular UI element? Time to recode it and make it easier. Are your players finding a particular level too easy? Time to make it harder. It’s through a variety of analytics tools that developers are able to do this. Companies such as Flurry, Google and Kontagent are all available to developers on iOS and Android, but what will BlackBerry 10 developers use? If you’re a developer making apps or games for BlackBerry 10, tell us what tools you’re using or considering. Keep reading for more details.

Flurry analytics screenshot

As far as we can tell, there seems to be only one solution for Native BlackBerry 10 developers and that solution is offered by Localytics. The company has a solution because one of their customers implemented Localytics on BlackBerry 10 and since there’s no official support for BB10, the client open sourced it.

Here is the official response from the Localytics team:

“Hello,

At this point Localytics does not have a native BB10 SDK built but as all of our SDKs are provided in source code one of our customers created their own BB10 SDK. As this is not an SDK written by Localytics we cannot assure that it will work 100% flawlessly but it would certainly be worth testing. If you have any feedback about the SDK please feel free to share it with the developer as well as us.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.”

Flurry has responded to a request about BlackBerry 10 support and the company has said that it doesn’t have any plans to support BlackBerry 10. Now, that doesn’t mean they won’t support it down the road, it just means that at this exact time it doesn’t look like they’re working on it.

Since BlackBerry 10 supports a wide range of code bases, there are some apps that will be able to leverage analytics on BB10. For example, Flurry’s Android SDK will work with Android apps that are ported using the Android Player. Also, there’s Adobe AIR support with Flurry so any AIR apps on BB10 will be able to leverage the SDK.

Also of note, RIM doesn’t even have support for BlackBerry 10 with its own analytics service.

So we’re curious, if you’re a BlackBerry 10 developer, what are you going to use for analytics?

  • http://twitter.com/StevenKader Steven Kader

    All of JaredCo’s apps on BBOS use analytics to help understand growth in user base as well as which functions are used most. In Screen Grabber for example users BBM their screen grabs twice as often as email or tweet them.

    We are going to be waiting for an official SDK from either RIM or Flurry which will support BB10. Hopefully it won’t be too far away because without we are just flying blind.

  • Jared

    As a BB10 developer I’ve been looking into an analytics solution on the platform for a while now – well before the BB10 tools were released to the public.

    The weather report so-to-speak is that current gen solutions are lame. Developers on nearly every modern platform regardless of language have the ability to perform web requests to services like Google analytics; If the app is not well suited for that kind of data (such as many games) then struggling with the interface may leave you with a lack of insightful data and ultimately lost development dollars.

    RIM is very aware of this limitation and has a planned solution for not only native developers but (seemingly) for each of their BB10 development platforms. It’s too early to say if it’s going to answer the questions that marketing and production teams need but we might be able to look at it’s sibling analytic solution on current gen blackberry java handsets.

    ( https://developer.blackberry.com/develop/platform_services/platform_analytics.html )

    As for Localitics the service they provide seems to be useful to teams that need very real-time data. However at over $10k per year it would really need to be more powerful for me to consider. As their team admits quite openly, they don’t seem to love BB10 and are not focusing development dollars towards the platform. The open source project referenced here has only been around for a month with 4 code contributions by 1 author, so it really isn’t a solution I would be confident using in a commercial product.

  • http://about.me/kylemcinnes Kyle McInnes

    Thanks Jared. It would be good to see some BlackBerry devs and possibly RIM folks contributing to the Localytics github project. With enough help, it could be something worth using.

  • http://www.facebook.com/xoorath Jared Thomson

    I agree; I’d like to see more open source development on BB10 and in the mobile industry as a whole. Right now there isn’t enough unification between the platforms so developers like myself are reproducing a lot of code to tie into the platforms. This level of platform fragmentation has been squashed out for end-users in many industries but developers still have to deal with a lot of specifics we shouldn’t need to.

    Some day I’d like to be able to use the same line of code to purchase a product from Apple, Rim, Amazon, Google, et-cetera.

  • BrennanR

    This is something I’ve been looking into a lot lately, it appears google analytics has a beta program for doing analytics with raw http requests. Short of that I see no solution. I use (and love) Flurry for a windows phone 7 app I released, so I would love to see a Flurry SDK. Right now I guess we’re stuck waiting for RIM. It’s a bad situation :/

  • http://www.kisailabs.com/ Jerome Carty

    I’ve been looking for the perfect solution on BB10, as it seems the Analytics service is just not ready yet. In the meantime, I’ll need to piecemeal something together that’s effective in returning the results I need to improve my apps.

  • Jason Schroeder

    Hi Jared – Jason from Orangatame here. qlocalytics is an open source project, I look forward to any code contributions. The current project has a great suite of unit tests that make me confident that this can meet your needs in a commercial project.

    As a side note, would you have felt more confident if I preserved my development history, instead of squashing it to just a few commits?

  • Jason Schroeder

    Amen! I already received one patch from the Localytics folks today.

  • http://twitter.com/CockyCulture Tony D

    For iOS I’ve been using TestFlightapp.com which has been phenomenal for beta testing. It creates an easy solution to find solid testers and also track how long they have been playing, what parts give trouble, etc.. BB10 really needs something along those lines.