Java IoT Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Jim Kaskade, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Java IoT, Mobile IoT, Linux Containers, Agile Computing, @DevOpsSummit

@CloudExpo: Article

Using Tools to Create Mobile Apps Quickly

Perfecto Mobile goes to cloud-based testing so developers can build the best apps faster

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.

Bigger problem

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.

We support native, hybrid applications, Web services, iOS, Android, and any other platform.

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.

ALM integration

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.

One of the things I’m quite proud of is that we, as a company, have proofs of success in the market.

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.

Internally, of course, we're using the HP suites, including Unified Functional Testing (UFT) Performance Center, and Load Runner in order to manage our own development.

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.

As the mobile market matures, organization are relying more on mobile to assure and increase their revenue.

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:

More Stories By Dana Gardner

At Interarbor Solutions, we create the analysis and in-depth podcasts on enterprise software and cloud trends that help fuel the social media revolution. As a veteran IT analyst, Dana Gardner moderates discussions and interviews get to the meat of the hottest technology topics. We define and forecast the business productivity effects of enterprise infrastructure, SOA and cloud advances. Our social media vehicles become conversational platforms, powerfully distributed via the BriefingsDirect Network of online media partners like ZDNet and IT-Director.com. As founder and principal analyst at Interarbor Solutions, Dana Gardner created BriefingsDirect to give online readers and listeners in-depth and direct access to the brightest thought leaders on IT. Our twice-monthly BriefingsDirect Analyst Insights Edition podcasts examine the latest IT news with a panel of analysts and guests. Our sponsored discussions provide a unique, deep-dive focus on specific industry problems and the latest solutions. This podcast equivalent of an analyst briefing session -- made available as a podcast/transcript/blog to any interested viewer and search engine seeker -- breaks the mold on closed knowledge. These informational podcasts jump-start conversational evangelism, drive traffic to lead generation campaigns, and produce strong SEO returns. Interarbor Solutions provides fresh and creative thinking on IT, SOA, cloud and social media strategies based on the power of thoughtful content, made freely and easily available to proactive seekers of insights and information. As a result, marketers and branding professionals can communicate inexpensively with self-qualifiying readers/listeners in discreet market segments. BriefingsDirect podcasts hosted by Dana Gardner: Full turnkey planning, moderatiing, producing, hosting, and distribution via blogs and IT media partners of essential IT knowledge and understanding.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Major trends and emerging technologies – from virtual reality and IoT, to Big Data and algorithms – are helping organizations innovate in the digital era. However, to create real business value, IT must think beyond the ‘what’ of digital transformation to the ‘how’ to harness emerging trends, innovation and disruption. Architecture is the key that underpins and ties all these efforts together. In the digital age, it’s important to invest in architecture, extend the enterprise footprint to the cl...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MathFreeOn will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MathFreeOn is Software as a Service (SaaS) used in Engineering and Math education. Write scripts and solve math problems online. MathFreeOn provides online courses for beginners or amateurs who have difficulties in writing scripts. In accordance with various mathematical topics, there are more tha...
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential Internet of Things Brand by Onalytica in the ‘The Internet of Things Landscape 2015: Top 100 Individuals and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed Twitter conversations around the #IoT debate to uncover the most influential brands and individuals driving the conversation. Onalytica captured data from 56,224 users. The PageRank based methodology they use to extract influencers on a particular topic (tweets mentioning #InternetofThings or #IoT in this ...
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential M2M Brand by Onalytica in the ‘Machine to Machine: Top 100 Influencers and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed the online debate on M2M by looking at over 85,000 tweets to provide the most influential individuals and brands that drive the discussion. According to Onalytica the "analysis showed a very engaged community with a lot of interactive tweets. The M2M discussion seems to be more fragmented and driven by some of the major brands present in the...
In the next forty months – just over three years – businesses will undergo extraordinary changes. The exponential growth of digitization and machine learning will see a step function change in how businesses create value, satisfy customers, and outperform their competition. In the next forty months companies will take the actions that will see them get to the next level of the game called Capitalism. Or they won’t – game over. The winners of today and tomorrow think differently, follow different...
In an era of historic innovation fueled by unprecedented access to data and technology, the low cost and risk of entering new markets has leveled the playing field for business. Today, any ambitious innovator can easily introduce a new application or product that can reinvent business models and transform the client experience. In their Day 2 Keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Mercer Rowe, IBM Vice President of Strategic Alliances, and Raejeanne Skillern, Intel Vice President of Data Center Group and ...
The Internet of Things (IoT), in all its myriad manifestations, has great potential. Much of that potential comes from the evolving data management and analytic (DMA) technologies and processes that allow us to gain insight from all of the IoT data that can be generated and gathered. This potential may never be met as those data sets are tied to specific industry verticals and single markets, with no clear way to use IoT data and sensor analytics to fulfill the hype being given the IoT today.
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smar...
Virgil consists of an open-source encryption library, which implements Cryptographic Message Syntax (CMS) and Elliptic Curve Integrated Encryption Scheme (ECIES) (including RSA schema), a Key Management API, and a cloud-based Key Management Service (Virgil Keys). The Virgil Keys Service consists of a public key service and a private key escrow service. 

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, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to impr...
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.
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftNet Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SoftNet Solutions specializes in Enterprise Solutions for Hadoop and Big Data. It offers customers the most open, robust, and value-conscious portfolio of solutions, services, and tools for the shortest route to success with Big Data. The unique differentiator is the ability to architect and ...
A critical component of any IoT project is what to do with all the data being generated. This data needs to be captured, processed, structured, and stored in a way to facilitate different kinds of queries. Traditional data warehouse and analytical systems are mature technologies that can be used to handle certain kinds of queries, but they are not always well suited to many problems, particularly when there is a need for real-time insights.
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 @...
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, will discuss why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue an...