In a press release from mobile ALM provider Keynote DeviceAnywhere, a partnership with TomTom was announced which enables real-time performance monitoring for TomTom devices. Ian Hammond, VP of Technical Operations for TomTom, said, “Our customers rely on our products and services to get them to their destinations faster and help them be more relaxed along the way. Any disruption in service can have a major impact on that experience, and so we are dedicated to ensuring that we proactively identify and solve problems before they impact our customers.”
Keynote DeviceAnywhere’s VP of Marketing, Leila Modarres, spoke with SSQ regarding the implementation of a performance monitoring solution for TomTom’s in-vehicle GPS devices and iPhone app. Keynote DeviceAnywhere provides a real-time monitoring product, Test Center Enterprise Monitoring™ (TCE Monitoring), which is accessed over a cloud-based platform.
According to Leila Modarres, “Any organization interested in bringing an application to the mobile platform will need to test it. It’s a necessity. It’s not a nice-to-have; it’s a need-to-have.” Testing is a challenge because of the diversity of devices and platforms. Quality is imperative, yet it can be time-consuming and expensive to ensure quality on mission-critical applications. Keynote DeviceAnywhere offers a public cloud or a private cloud option for Software-as-a-Service models that provide testing through automated processes as well as real-time monitoring services.
The Test Center Enterprise allows the developer community, or whoever is responsible for testing the application and making sure it is working properly before it hits the market and also after it hits the market, to access any device over a Web-based platform that they need to test the applications on, and this is really important because in the mobile world, there are a lot of different devices, and a lot of different platforms there, so it really is a fragmented scenario in comparison to software-based application development and testing where you are really looking at a fixed device.
TCE Monitoring provides constant performance monitoring, which sends instant alerts to the provider (rather than the users) when issues arise. This service also provides feedback on performance and issues that come up, allowing the product provider to proactively address weaknesses before they affect the users in many cases.
Ian Hammond of TomTom described how the TCE Monitoring service has enabled TomTom to provide geographically specific monitoring of their devices and iPhone app in France. Drivers in France are very interested in identifying the locations of speed cameras, as well as up-to-date information on traffic, both of which TomTom delivers. In addition, TomTom offers weather information and search offerings-- which allow users to locate specific types of businesses nearby. In order to monitor these services, TomTom was attracted to Keynote DeviceAnywhere’s hardware integration solution because they can upgrade their own software without having to do re-integration on their devices and without redoing their test sets each time.
As TomTom expands to the U.S. and other countries, they will be able to continue monitoring performance in different geographical areas. The Keynote DeviceAnywhere solutions allow them to rapidly identify and resolve issues, rather than the previous method of relying on user calls to customer care, which often only stand out after numerous similar reports are called in and escalated for support.
As Ian Hammond explained, “There is an expectation with iPhone apps. If you buy an app that costs you 99 cents, and it doesn’t work, you’ll think, ‘oh, that was a pain, but I’m not going to lose sleep over it.’”
He went on:
If you’ve paid $60 for an iPhone app and a year’s subscription to live services, and it doesn’t work at 8:00 in the morning when you’re trying to drive to the office, you’re going to be pretty upset. So it’s really key for us that we are able to monitor in the field what’s going on with our devices. We don’t have offices everywhere, so this kind of solution allows us to put our devices wherever we want to put them and monitor them in any geography, which is invaluable when we’re trying to do full diagnoses.
Both companies are excited about the collaboration, and will continue to evaluate the success of real-time performance monitoring as TomTom expands services to the United States and other areas. As both organizations have mentioned, ongoing application testing and monitoring are imperative to maintain the positive image and popularity of mobile apps and services.