Twitter has released a new mobile app, but it isn’t for the average Twitter user. Rather, the new Fabric mobile app is a tool for mobile developers to keep track of the stability of their apps from their smartphones, the company announced Tuesday.
The move is part of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s turnaround plan that involves re-envigorating the developer community in hopes they'll build apps on Twitter. Twitter stock has been trading under its IPO price from November 2013 and hit record lows of $15 earlier this year.
The new app allows developers who use Twitter’s software development kit called Fabric to see how their app is behaving in real time. If there is a critical issue such as a crash, the app will send the developer a push notification with information on how to resolve it, such as number of affected users and breakdown of devices. The app also has a notes feature so that multiple developers can communicate within the system.
Prior to the app, developers would only be able to identify and address crashes from their laptops or desktop computers. With the Fabric app, “even before you pull up your laptop, you know where to look for a bug, who on your team to reach out to and how it could affect your metrics,” Twitter Product Manager Meekal Bajaj wrote in a blog post about the update.
Twitter touted that more than 250,000 mobile app developers use Fabric and its other services Crashlytics and Answers. Several popular apps rely on Twitter’s services, including dating app Tinder and fitness app RunKeeper.
RunKeeper was involved in the beta test of the Fabric app. “When I leave the office, I know that I can count on Fabric to send nudges when something critical happens to our app's stability. Because of that, our team will get tons of time back, and can truly deliver on the best customer experience for our users, no matter where we are,” Mike Oliver, RunKeeper’s vice president of product engineering, said in a statement.
Twitter isn’t the only company offering such a service. In fact, last week, Yahoo released a similar app for its developers who use Flurry, the company announced at its mobile developers conference in San Francisco.
On the contrast, Facebook recently decided to take its hand out of the business of providing mobile development tools. Facebook announced it would be closing down Parse, a company it acquired for $85 million in 2013, last month. "We're proud that we've been able to help so many of you build great mobile apps, but we need to focus our resources elsewhere," Kevin Lacker, co-founder of Parse, wrote in a blog post.
But Twitter's Dorsey says he is confident in his company’s ability to support developers. “We believe there's huge strategic value in building a platform for developers that helps us grow our reach,” Dorsey wrote in his letter to shareholders for the fourth-quarter of 2015 report. “We believe that these sites and apps are incredibly important amplifiers that show the huge reach and importance of Tweets.”