October 21, 2014

Duarlander Promises Consistent Android Experiences

DuarlanderThe issue of Android fragmentation is a legitimate one but has a much greater effect on developers than consumers.  We, as consumers, want your app to work on our phone, period.  Your job as a developer is to insure that it does just that.  And with a now 48 hour return policy in place, insuring that your app works across all flavors of Android is crucial for the developer!  With more and more Android handsets due this is a daunting task.  A company called Duarlander was recently launched with a unique plan and a promise to resolve this issue.  “We ensure that your application works consistently across all devices” is the bold statement found on their web page.  How do they do it?

The company, started by Andrew Wicklander, evolved out of the frustration all developers must feel in trying to insure their app will work on everything Android.  During the development process for an application Wicklander, like Android developers everywhere, found that his app would work on one phone but not others.  What started as frustration ended with inspiration and Duarlander was born.  AndroidGuy Mark Murphy listed a service to aid developers in his Android Business Models article in September of this year.  Mark described the then non-existent service this way,  “…  simply an application testing service: you invest in a large number of devices and you sell your expertise in testing applications on those devices and reporting back issues (along with suggested ways to address them).”  Duarlander is the company that provides that service.

Once engaged, Duarlander will download your app and test it against every Android handset released in the US.  That’s right, every Android handset in the US!  The results are documented and you receive a report detailing the devices your app worked on and those it did not work on.  Issues are communicated and shared via chat, phone, video chat, device snapshots and even screen sharing if necessary.  In the event an issue arises, Duarlander will continue to test the same version of your app until it works on each device.  Once working, a video of your app performing without error is sent to you as confirmation.

The best part is that, for the time being, you as developers can help set the price.  Duarlander is a company unlike any other maneuvering in unchartered waters.  They, as developers themselves, understand the value of the service they provide but aren’t sure yet what to charge for it.  Wicklander told me that a price point will be set by months end.  Until then Duarlander is asking for your help.  Send them your app, give them a test drive and then answer these questions:

  1. How much do you think we should charge for this service?
  2. How much would you be willing to donate today?
  3. How you would rate our service?

Duarlander does not promise to find every bug in your app and is not a replacement for your own QA process.  It does however provide you with a peace of mind in knowing that your app has been tested on and works consistently across all devices.  If you can’t say that about your app before you make it available in the market, you may want to give Duarlander a try.