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How Facebook keeps you from hating its apps

Steven Max Patterson | July 14, 2016
Nothing provokes app uninstalls like sluggish performance and aggressive battery consumption. Facebook reveals how it prevents those uninstalls.

Like all of the server racks, the mobile test lab racks are designed for unattended operation except for intervention by a technician when the system sends an alert of a hardware malfunction. The phones’ iOS and Android operating systems can be automatically upgraded or downgraded to match the test scenario. Similarly, the device states can be managed, configuring parameters such as Wi-Fi settings and security certificates.

After testing, the apps are removed and the system restores the phones to the pretested state. If the test instrumentation indicates a reboot is necessary to return them to the initial pretest state, the system sends a reboot commanded and confirms state-readiness for the next test.

Reversat’s demonstration brought home another point. Mobile platform upgrade cycles are much different than those for the PC platform. Intel and PC manufacturers could forecast their revenues and product introductions based on Microsoft’s operating system and application software upgrades because each upgrade required more powerful hardware.

Facebook is representative of a different trend in mobile application development to increase app features without consuming more smartphone hardware resources. Apple, Samsung and other smartphone makers have to design phones that attract buyers without counting on app developers to consume more resources. Richard Windsor of Radio Free Mobile fully explains how this dilemma affects Apple in a recent blog post

 

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