Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Mob4Hire Labs – the newest lab is born!

Mob4Hire Baby App was launched on December 3rd in the wee hours of the morning.  

CTO, John Carpenter, told us this was “a really tough R&D project” and that not everything went as planned.  But, the team pulled through and delivered a working prototype "on time and in spec at 54cm tall and weighing 3.23Kg."

Alpha version, featuring Goo Eee testing ™ -- comparing real world devices for teething quality -- is closed due to high demand.  We’ll keep you posted on version 2.0.

Congratulations to John and Pascale!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

SMS Testing Worldwide

Check out the writeup on SMS testing on TechWell magazine. Thank you to Jonathan Kohl and all those at Techwell for making this possible.


Jonathan Kohl: Why do we need to test SMS messaging?

Paul Poutanen: Unfortunately, in a lot of cases it does not work. Again, according to Wikipedia, “… around 1 percent to 5 percent of messages are lost entirely, even during normal operation conditions, and others may not be delivered until long after their relevance has passed.”

The way it works is not simple, especially when looking at international SMS routing. There are over 1,000 carriers and network operators in the world. (No one ever seems to know how many.) If every one of those carriers had to make a contract with every other carrier, it would be very difficult (say, 1000!, or 4.0239 x 102567 contracts required). So, they make deals with SMS aggregators. For instance, in one country, a carrier may have a deal with five aggregators that agree to send and receive SMS to every country and carrier in the world. Those five aggregators may have agreements with twenty other aggregators that then have agreements with one hundred other aggregators. By the time the SMS gets to the end carrier, it may have gone through ten servers of aggregators. That would be considered the “route” of the SMS.

You think your SMS has made it through, and you have confirmation of that from the last link in the chain (the carrier). Hurray!

Hold on!

The end carriers are very cognizant of spam SMS. If they think an SMS might be spam, they may not let it through. However, they have sent a signal to the last aggregator that the SMS has been received to the carrier gateway. The aggregator believes this to be a signal that the SMS has been received and their service-level agreement (SLA) has been agreed to.

So, if you roll the dice and your SMS makes it through the last part of the chain, the carrier might block it but not tell you. It isn’t a black hole; in some cases, the carrier tells you the SMS made it to their gateway. That is what most SMS SLAs aim for.

You can see it is a mess, but it gets worse. This process of getting an SMS to the end handset is dynamic. SMS aggregators may change their routes every day, meaning a message that was successful when sent in the morning may not work in the afternoon.

Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 Wrap-up: Review of Last Year's Mob4Hire Predictions

First off… a SUPER BIG THANKS once again to our customers, mobsters, partners and investors for another year of keeping us on the leading edge of mobile quality assurance. We'll unveil our mobile trends 2012 predictions in the next week.

Now, it’s time to reflect on 2011’s predictions… In 2010 we gave ourselves a B+ with a few notable highlights, even if we do say so ourselves.  This year, we’re closer to a B:

The Platform Race is Far From Over.  We said – ‘Apple and Android would not be the “winners” because the marathon will continue to play out over the next 5 to 10 years’ (wow – talk about hedging your bets, when you think about it - neither of these two platforms were here 5 years ago!). Vision Mobile’s Developer Economics 2011 told us Java ME and Symbian have the highest developer attrition rate, but Mobile web as a platform has moved in to third position. We just may have to wait out the next 5 to 10 years to see if we’re right…

The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth.  We said – ‘There will not be enough talent for everyone... and people who CREATE software experiences decide what platforms to support’.  Problem is we didn’t really have a metric for this one. We’re basing our score on the ‘vibes’. See also prediction #1.

App Stores Will Continue to Explode.  We said – ‘There will be over 200 app stores at this time next year.’ Based on the count it’s closer to 125 – We thought the carriers and online retailers would be jumping on board, but we’ve learned that the sheer volume of apps combined with the lack of capacity to screen and market apps is slowing things down.

The Cost of Developing Mobile Experiences Will Increase Significantly.

The Number of Ad Networks Will Explode.  ‘We'll expect to see many carrier-specific ad networks pop-up this year.’ Seems like Mobile Network Operators are missing the boat on some great opportunities as we saw very little increase here. Attractive, with ad revenues expected to hit $3.3B (up from $1.6B in 2010 -- Gartner via mobiThinking) and the Networks own the local customers.

Microsoft Regains Share.  IDC (March 2011 via reported Windows Phone/Mobile had a 5.5% market share and more telling an expected 67.1% CAGR from 2011 to 2015.

Brands Will Embrace Mobile for Advertising and Engagement. While Brands saw a decline in engagement due to the recession, comscore’s “Do you buy the brand you want most?” index fell from 54% in 2008 to 43% in 2011 and have responded more on-line advertising (23% increase, according to comscore Oct 2011. The distribution has been all media and Mobile is starting to attract attention… see also mobile Ad Network prediction.

RIM and NOKIA Dance the Dance of Disruption.  We said – ‘RIM and NOKIA are arguably the biggest of handset and O/S manufacturers that are threatened by the new wave of mobile… and have ben successful because the know the value of a good Telecom relationship’. Sadly their dance was not as good as we thought.

Enterprise Embraces Mobile as a Productivity Tool, not just for Communications.   According to iPass 2011 Mobile Enterprise Report provisioning of smartphones and tablets in the next year continues to increase significantly.

HP and DELL Try, but Stumble in the Mobile and Tablet Space.  The HP TouchPad launched in July, 2011 – pulled in August, 2011 and the Dell Streak was pulled in December 2011– RIP…

So, what will happen in 2012? Stay tuned ... we'll post our thoughts soon.

Cheers from the team!