|By Dana Gardner||
|June 16, 2014 11:37 AM EDT||
We have surely entered a golden age of mobile apps development, not just for app stores wares, but across all kinds of enterprise and productivity applications. The notion of mobile-first has altered the development landscape so much that the very notion of software development writ large will never be the same.
With the shift comes a need for speed, but not so much so that security and performance requirements suffer. How to maintain the balance between rapid delivery and quality assurance falls to the testing teams. Into the fray comes cloud-based testing efficiencies.
Our next innovation case study interview therefore highlights how Perfecto Mobile is using a variety of cloud-based testing tools to help its developers rapidly create the best mobile apps for both enterprises and commercial deployment.
BriefingsDirect had an opportunity to learn first-hand how rapid cloud testing begets better mobile development when we interviewed Yoram Mizrachi, CTO and Founder of Perfecto Mobile, based in Woburn, Mass. The discussion is moderated by me, Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions.
Here are some excerpts:
Gardner: Tell us about the state of the mobile development market. How fast is it growing, and who are building mobile apps these days?
Mizrachi: Everyone is building mobile applications today. We have not gone into a single company that doesn't have anything on mobile. It's like what happened on the web 15 years ago. Mobile is moving fast. Even today, we have customers with more transactions on mobile than any other channel that they're offering, including web or making calls. Mobile is here.
Gardner: So that's a big challenge for companies that perhaps are used to a development cycle that took a lot longer, where they had more time to do testing and quality assurance. Mobile development seems to be speeding up. Is there a time crunch that they're concerned about?
Mizrachi: Absolutely. In mobile there are two factors that come into play. The first one is that everyone today is expecting things to happen much faster. So everyone is talking about agile and DevOps, and crunching the time for a version from a few months, maybe even a year, into few weeks.
With mobile, there's a bigger problem. The market itself is moving faster. Looking at the mobile market, you see hundreds of mobile models being launched every year. Apple is releasing many models. Android is releasing tremendous amount of new models every year. The challenge for enterprises is how to release faster on one side, but still maintain a decent quality on all the wide ranges of devices available.
Gardner: So that's a big challenge in terms of coming up with a test environment for each of those iterations.
Of course, we're also seeing mobile first, where they're going to build mobile, and it's changing the whole nature of development. It's a very dynamic and busy time for developers and enterprises. Tell us about Perfecto Mobile and how you're helping them to manage these difficult times.
Mizrachi: Yes, it is mobile first. Many of our existing customers, as I mentioned, have more transactions on mobile than anything else. Today, they're building an interface for their customers starting from mobile. This means there are tremendous issues that they need to handle, starting with automation. If automation was nice to have on traditional web -- with mobile it's no longer a question. Building a robust and continuous automated testing environment is a must in mobile.
Gardner: Now, we're talking about not only different targets for mobile, but we're talking about different types of applications. There's Android, Apple, native, HTML 5, Web, hybrid. How wide a landscape of types of apps are you supporting with your testing capabilities?
Mizrachi: When you look at the market today, mobile is moving very fast, and you're right, there are lots of solutions available in the market. One of the things that Perfecto Mobile is bringing to the market is the fact that we support them all. We support native, hybrid applications, Web services, iOS, Android, and any other platform. All of this is provided as a cloud service. We enable our customers to worry a little bit less about the environment and a little bit more about the actual testing.
Gardner: Tell us how you're doing this? I know that you are a software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider and that the testing that you provide is through a cloud-based model. A lot of organizations have traditionally done their own testing or used some tools that may have been SaaS-provided. How are companies viewing going purely to a SaaS model for their testing with their mobile apps?
Mizrachi: The nice thing about what we do with cloud is that it solves a huge logistical problem for the enterprises. We're providing managed solution for those physical devices. So it's many things.
One of them is just physically managing those devices and enabling access to them from anywhere in the world. For example, if I'm a U.S.-based company, I can have my workforce and my testing, located anywhere in the world without the need to worry about the logistics of managing devices, offshoring, or anything like that. Our customers are utilizing this cloud model to not change their existing processes when moving into mobile.
Gardner: And in order to be able to use cloud amid a larger application lifecycle, you must also offer application lifecycle management (ALM) or at least integrate with ALM, source code management, and other aspects of development. How does that work?
Mizrachi: Our approach was to not reinvent the wheel. When looking at the large enterprises, we figured out that the existing ALM solutions in the market, led by HP, is there, and the right approach is to integrate or to extend them into mobile and not to replace them.
What we have is an extension to the ALM products in such a way that you, as a customer, don't have to change your existing processes and practices in order to move to mobile. You'll have a lot of issues when moving into mobile, and we don't believe that changing the processes should be one of them.
Gardner: Of course with HP having some 65 percent of the market for ALM and a major market presence for a lot of other testing and business service management capabilities, it was a no-brainer for you to have to integrate to HP. But you've gone beyond that. You're using HP yourself for your own testing. Tell us how you came to do that.
Mizrachi: HP has the largest market in ALM, and looking at our customers in Fortune 500 companies, it was really obvious that we needed to utilize, integrate, or extend HP ALM tools in order to provide a market with the best solution.
One of the things I'm quite proud of is that we, as a company, have proof of success in the market, with hundreds of customers already using us and tens of thousands of hours of automation every month being utilized.
We have customers with thousands of automated scripts running continuously in order to validate the applications. It's a competitive environment, obviously, but with Perfecto Mobile, the value that we're bringing to the table is that we have a proven solution today used by the largest Fortune 500 companies in finance, retail, travel, utilities, and they have been using us not for months, but for years.
Gardner: Where do you see this going next? Is there a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) opportunity where we're going to do not just testing but development and deployment ultimately? If you are in the cloud for more and more of what you do in development and deployment, it makes sense to try to solidify and unify across a cloud from start to finish.
Mizrachi: I'm obviously a little bit biased, but, yes, my belief is that the software development life cycle (SDLC) is moving to the cloud. If you want to go ahead, you don't really have a choice. One of the major failures in SDLC is setup of the environment. If you don't have the right environment, just in time, you will fail to deliver regardless of the tool that you have.
Just in time
Moving to the cloud means that you have everything that you need just in time. It's available for you. Someone has to make sure this solution is available with a given service-level agreement (SLA) and all of that. This is what Perfecto Mobile is doing of course, but I believe the entire market is going into that. Software development is moving to the cloud. This is quite obvious.
For our customers, the top insurance and top financial banks customers, healthcare organizations, all of them, security is extremely important, and of course it is for us. Our hosting solution is a SOC 2-certified solution. We have dedicated personnel for security and we make sure that our customers enjoy the highest level of privacy and, of course, security -- physical security, network security, and all the tools and processes in place.
Gardner: And, as we know, HP has been doing testing in the cloud successfully for more than 10 years and moving aggressively in that space early on.
Mizrachi: We're enjoying the fact that our research and development center and HP's research and development center are close-by. So the development of the two products is very close. We have weekly or biweekly meetings between products and R and D teams in order to make sure that those two tools are moving together.
SDLC, as you mentioned, is a lifecycle. It's not only about one time testing; it's ongoing. And post-deployment, when moving into production, you need to see that what you're offering to the market on the real device is actually what you expect. That's extremely important.
As the mobile market matures, organization are relying more on mobile to assure and increase their revenue. So making sure the mobile offering is up and running and meets the right key performance indicators (KPIs) on an ongoing basis is extremely important. The integration that we've made with BSM is utilizing an existing extremely mature product on the monitoring aspect and extending that with cloud-based real mobile devices for application monitoring.
You may also be interested in:
- Big data's big payoff arrives as customer experience insights drive new business advantages
- How healthcare SaaS provider PointClickCare masters quality and DevOps using cloud ITSM
- Software security pays off: How Heartland Payment Systems gains steep ROI via software assurance tools and methods
- HP HAVEn CTO Mundada on new ways for businesses to gain transformation from big data and new wave analysis
- HP ART documentation and readiness tools bring better user experiences to Nordic IT solutions provider EVRY
- NASCAR attains intimacy and affinity with fans worldwide using big data analytics
- Siemens Brazil Leverages HP Anywhere to Deliver Applications Better to More Mobile Devices
- Nimble Storage Leverages Big Data and Cloud to Produce Data Performance Optimization on the Fly
- MZI Healthcare Identifies Big Data Patient Productivity Gems Using HP Vertica
- Thought Leader Interview: HP's Global CISO Brett Wahlin on the future of Security and Risk
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
Jan. 23, 2017 07:00 AM EST Reads: 6,939
Smart Cities are here to stay, but for their promise to be delivered, the data they produce must not be put in new siloes. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mathias Herberts, Co-founder and CTO of Cityzen Data, discussed the best practices that will ensure a successful smart city journey.
Jan. 23, 2017 05:00 AM EST Reads: 2,145
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
Jan. 23, 2017 03:00 AM EST Reads: 1,028
"Tintri was started in 2008 with the express purpose of building a storage appliance that is ideal for virtualized environments. We support a lot of different hypervisor platforms from VMware to OpenStack to Hyper-V," explained Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Jan. 23, 2017 02:30 AM EST Reads: 5,021
Data is an unusual currency; it is not restricted by the same transactional limitations as money or people. In fact, the more that you leverage your data across multiple business use cases, the more valuable it becomes to the organization. And the same can be said about the organization’s analytics. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bill Schmarzo, CTO for the Big Data Practice at Dell EMC, introduced a methodology for capturing, enriching and sharing data (and analytics) across the organization...
Jan. 23, 2017 02:30 AM EST Reads: 3,379
Manufacturers are embracing the Industrial Internet the same way consumers are leveraging Fitbits – to improve overall health and wellness. Both can provide consistent measurement, visibility, and suggest performance improvements customized to help reach goals. Fitbit users can view real-time data and make adjustments to increase their activity. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mark Bernardo Professional Services Leader, Americas, at GE Digital, discussed how leveraging the Industrial Internet and...
Jan. 23, 2017 02:00 AM EST Reads: 6,649
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, director/senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Jan. 23, 2017 01:45 AM EST Reads: 2,787
Why do your mobile transformations need to happen today? Mobile is the strategy that enterprise transformation centers on to drive customer engagement. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Woods, Director, Mobile Product & Strategy – Adobe Marketing Cloud, covered key IoT and mobile trends that are forcing mobile transformation, key components of a solid mobile strategy and explored how brands are effectively driving mobile change throughout the enterprise.
Jan. 23, 2017 12:00 AM EST Reads: 5,886
IoT is at the core or many Digital Transformation initiatives with the goal of re-inventing a company's business model. We all agree that collecting relevant IoT data will result in massive amounts of data needing to be stored. However, with the rapid development of IoT devices and ongoing business model transformation, we are not able to predict the volume and growth of IoT data. And with the lack of IoT history, traditional methods of IT and infrastructure planning based on the past do not app...
Jan. 22, 2017 11:00 PM EST Reads: 1,048
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with 20th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry p...
Jan. 22, 2017 07:45 PM EST Reads: 3,876
"LinearHub provides smart video conferencing, which is the Roundee service, and we archive all the video conferences and we also provide the transcript," stated Sunghyuk Kim, CEO of LinearHub, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Jan. 22, 2017 03:15 PM EST Reads: 1,699
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @ThingsExpo New York Call for Papers is now open.
Jan. 22, 2017 02:30 PM EST Reads: 3,768
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
Jan. 22, 2017 02:00 PM EST Reads: 5,305
"There's a growing demand from users for things to be faster. When you think about all the transactions or interactions users will have with your product and everything that is between those transactions and interactions - what drives us at Catchpoint Systems is the idea to measure that and to analyze it," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York Ci...
Jan. 22, 2017 02:00 PM EST Reads: 5,840
WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web communications world. The 6th WebRTC Summit continues our tradition of delivering the latest and greatest presentations within the world of WebRTC. Topics include voice calling, video chat, P2P file sharing, and use cases that have already leveraged the power and convenience of WebRTC.
Jan. 22, 2017 01:45 PM EST Reads: 3,240
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
Jan. 22, 2017 01:00 PM EST Reads: 4,401
Discover top technologies and tools all under one roof at April 24–28, 2017, at the Westin San Diego in San Diego, CA. Explore the Mobile Dev + Test and IoT Dev + Test Expo and enjoy all of these unique opportunities: The latest solutions, technologies, and tools in mobile or IoT software development and testing. Meet one-on-one with representatives from some of today's most innovative organizations
Jan. 22, 2017 12:45 PM EST Reads: 1,699
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
Jan. 22, 2017 11:45 AM EST Reads: 2,980
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Jan. 22, 2017 11:30 AM EST Reads: 3,764
The WebRTC Summit New York, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 20th International Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo. WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web co...
Jan. 22, 2017 09:30 AM EST Reads: 3,042