Unstable apps are indeed a nightmare. Imagine having an e-commerce app and in the middle of completing the payment process, the app crashes. It's not exactly the best thing to happen. If this happens too often then the app is about to lose most of its users. Users expect apps to be free of bugs and stable.
Crashes are inevitable in mobile apps. Sometimes it can be coding issues , poor memory management or sometimes device incompatibility. Users do not tolerate crashes well. The acceptable crash rate per user is less than 1%. So it is necessary to make the app as smooth as possible.
One of the things to note is that the app need not be running when the crash happens. Before understanding the reason and the other elements of the crash, let us understand a few common issues leading to a mobile app crash.
It can be very difficult to manage memory but as an app developer, memory footprint should be at the top of your priority list. One of the biggest reasons why when an app shows up with performance issues is due to high memory usage. Also, using a lot more memory than needed without showing any significant improvement can cause a lot of issues.
For example: due to adding too many SDKs to your app, the bloat will cause your app to slow down and crash.
This is because if your app uses a lot of memory then the mobile app OS will stop the app’s actions and crashes will be inevitable. Without proper configuration of sizing it can be very difficult to make a good app that is stable for the most part.
One excellent way to avoid this is to avoid large files like pictures and videos and load them only when necessary.
It is crucial to test the app before releasing the same. And this seems very obvious at first glance. However, let us understand that emulating every scenario in the tests is not possible. Given the fact that there is a myriad of versions and devices of Android and IOS. There are simulating tools but bringing up all the issues all at the same time is not possible.
For example, when one thread is trying to read the database and the other is trying to modify the database, both these threads have to hit at the exact point in time. These errors cannot be brought by simulation tools.
Albeit there are services that emulate various devices, they are expensive and it becomes a tug of war between budget and technical requirements.
When the app’s calling function causes an error this may result in errors in further operations. To counter this iOS (objective C) and Android (Java) have dedicated error management frameworks. If done properly, they make sure that the app processes do not terminate and hereby crash.
Basically while using an app, the app requests usage of some already available data for further operations. But sometimes the supply of data becomes lesser than the demand for data. This is a highly notorious issue that can cause a lot of issues and ultimately crashes. It requires thorough troubleshooting and still, it can be troublesome to fix the issue.
There are also more reasons like network issues, device incompatibility, poor front end optimization and poor software development life cycle.
As we mentioned before, mobile apps need continuous testing to detect problems that might arise and we also have to emulate user experience testing as sometimes issues are faced among the users. But sometimes we need the exact places of error reporting and unfortunately, most actual users are not of a technical background. So they can not give specific reporting and give vague descriptions. This is where mobile app crash reporting comes into the picture.
We can say the best tools for mobile app crash reporting is the one that can help us identify the issue and helps us understand the reliability of time in real-time. A tool that can give a real-time analysis with specifics of the error. So the best tools that are available are:
This is the most widely used crash analytics platform. It is a part of the Google Firebase platform which means it is free to use. Crashlytics shows a detailed report of the apps on Android and iOS as well. Events that cause a crash can be selected and the root causes of a crash can be zeroed down. Also, it can be configured in such a way that it will produce alerts in time when the crash is happening so that the problem may be solved as soon as possible.
This app will give the detailed line of code which causes the app to crash. Bugsnag is an open-sourced real-time error reporting tool that supports more than 50 frameworks like ReactNative. The errors are customizable that may show the different environments of the crash caused or the exact event that may have caused it.
This is an analytics platform for mobile, web and desktop. It provides monitoring of real-time fatal and non-fatal errors of the apps. This provides a detailed report of the crash and you may narrow down the event to find the precise event that caused the crash.
Instabug is a unique platform that provides the report through the SDK of the app. When a bug is discovered by the user, it is reported immediately to the developers by capturing an image. Then the problem can be solved as soon as possible. Instabug provides detailed reports about the crash and has the symbolicated stack traces, console logs and reproduction of the crash which is important for the developer to fix the bug as soon as possible.
UserExperior is a platform that allows the app developers to improve user experience by showing visual crash analytics, console logs, and the session replays. With a visual insights, it is easy for support, design, product, and dev teams to understand and fix the issue as soon as possible.
In the end, it is crucial for app developers to have a complete idea about the crashes, the error and the problems that cause disturbances in the apps. Developers need a complete report that is specific to fix the issue but also emulates a layman user. These tools just make it better and hence it is crucial to have any one of these tools in your software development toolkit