“Three of our engineers were chasing a critical bug for a whole week and made no progress. After adding the TestFairy SDK we found the problem in 5 minutes.”- Hannes Kleist, Co-Founder and General Manager, Stanwood
is a mobile app development agency focussing on media, health and automotive industries. The company is based in Berlin, and its team of 40 designers, developers and product managers operate remotely from all over Europe. Their first app, ON AIR, is a TV guide app that aired in 2009 and still has 1 million active users today. Since then, they have developed over 60 native iOS and Android apps for customers like ProSiebenSat.1, Condé Nast, Bertelsmann, FUNKE MEDIENGRUPPE, Jaguar & Land Rover, etc. In 2015, the FUNKE MEDIENGRUPPE, Germany's third-largest magazine and newspaper publisher, acquired 33 percent of Stanwood. Since 2017, Stanwood is a 100 percent subsidiary of FUNKE MEDIENGRUPPE and acts as their mobile task force in order to grow the group’s mobile business.
TestFairy is a mobile testing platform that enables teams to find, report and solve complex problems with their mobile apps, all from one dashboard. The platform includes an enterprise app-distribution solution for iOS and Android apps, and provides an SDK that collects valuable information such as videos showing user behavior, app logs and crash reports. This information is collected and presented in an organized way, in a single, easy-to-use dashboard helping teams to quickly reproduce and understand problems, allowing for accurate and timely bug fixes.
First, as a company comprised of people working remotely, Stanwood’s biggest challenge is to coordinate between all employees and make sure everybody is up to date on all ongoing work in their projects. The volume of the work is a challenge in itself: about 60 apps, each in both iOS and Android versions, so around 120 in total. Stanwood needed a smart and efficient way to handle distribution, make sure their testers are all using the latest builds, and finally managing all the feedback posted by clients and testers.This brings up another challenge Stanwood faces regularly: reproducing real clients’ bugs, which sometimes span across suites of products in varying usage environments. These situations require efficient follow up on client feedback, reliable reproduction and quick resolution of bugs.
The testfairy solution
TestFairy’s platform fit right in, with everything Stanwood was looking for
Stanwood employees use multiple collaborational platforms and tools to work in sync on their projects and bridge the gap between their numerous locations and varying work hours.With a range of tools from Github to Bitrise and JIRA, Stanwood was looking for a solution that could streamline the development and testing process, while providing a convenient solution for Beta distribution and feedback collection.
TestFairy’s platform fit right in, with everything Stanwood was looking for:
Stanwood integrated TestFairy with Bitrise
to automatically upload their latest builds from Bitrise to TestFairy, where it’s quick and easy for internal QA and project managers to distribute builds and manage data collected from testing sessions. When a feedback is submitted, TestFairy’s integration with JIRA automatically opens a JIRA issue with videos, logs and all the relevant data a developer needs to resolve an issue. This key feature streamlines the work of product managers, who otherwise have to switch back and forth between feedback solutions and JIRA and manually create those issues.
Awesome distribution: Stanwood uses TestFairy’s distribution solution in various use cases. For example, when a weekly sprint is done, Stanwood’s product managers can easily send the latest build to their clients and testing agencies. When one of the managers goes to meet a client, they send him the latest and most stable build versions to download to his phone right before the meeting, so the clients get a clear and current view. Whatever the need, TestFairy’s distribution solution makes it really to easy to get apps on devices, fast.
Easy, useful feedback: TestFairy’s feedback system offers Stanwood everything they need to manage all that feedback efficiently, and save time especially in cases where they run across bugs that are particularly hard to reproduce. All a user has to do in order to submit feedback is shake their device and fill out a report, which automatically opens an issue in JIRA and immediately reaches the relevant personnel. The key feature that upgrades this feedback experience is screenshot annotation - TestFairy enables more flexible intuitive annotation on screenshots when providing feedback. This proves very helpful in cases where users can’t necessarily explain in words what they mean.
TestFairy's dashboard is as intuitive and friendly to product and QA managers as it is to developers
These tools were just the start of it. By adding the TestFairy SDK, Stanwood was now using TestFairy to record videos and data from each and every testing session of their many app builds. This automatically provided them with great insight into how users use their app and what happens when something goes wrong. All this information is conveniently arranged in a user friendly dashboard that is useful and intuitive to employees across the company workflow: product managers, developers, QA managers, and even higher management levels. This allows developers to spend less time on reproducing bugs, and more time on solving them. Within the dashboard, TestFairy’s session overview helps the team focus on what matters, for instance:
Device specifications and meta data for every session: trying to manually (or verbally) get this information from users wastes a lot of time and effort, and usually yields partial information, while TestFairy’s feedback reports provide all the comprehensive data about the device, OS and environment specs, automatically. This is a big time saver for Stanwood when facing a bug they need to reproduce and resolve.
Video recordings of each session: Usually clients and testers are not very adept in describing the steps they’ve taken, in order for the development team to be able to reproduce an issue. TestFairy’s video recordings enable Stanwood’s team to see exactly what the client did during a session, providing them with a clearer picture of what happened and saving time on back-and-forth with confused users.
An event timeline next to the video screen, detailing each action, event and request that took place during the session, all timed and running parallel to the video. This enables the team to see exactly what happened and when, find out the failed event and its timing, and go right into the server logs to check it out.
fix bugs faster
“There is literally no other way, sometimes, to get rid of a bug”- Hannes Kleist
Hannes, the Co-Founder and General Manager of Stanwood, told us how TestFairy helped them solve an extra-problematic bug:
“We had a bug on a suite of products that uses one code base for ten different clients. We had the same bug reported to us by several of those clients but we couldn’t reproduce it because the steps to reproduce it were just too much, even when the clients explained exactly what they did. Three of our engineers already spent a week working on it and still no progress. Then TestFairy came along. We added the TestFairy SDK and found the relevant tip for figuring out the bug in just five minutes: I had a device that experienced that bug, so all I had to do was shake the device to bring the session up in TestFairy and find out the one piece of information we needed to figure out the issue”.
Hannes remarks that what really matters for him in TestFairy’s service is their responsiveness. As TestFairy is a success-critical tool for Stanwood, and is central in their daily workflow, it is instrumental to have fast response times and engineers ready to look into an issue right away when you need it. While other companies may charge you heavily to provide you with high quality support service, TestFairy is very quick to respond to any issue, ready on chat right from the system dashboard, even if the issue doesn’t necessarily turn out to be in the system itself.
To sum it up:
TestFairy fits into Stanwood’s workflow like a glove: integrating between the various tools the team uses and arranging vast amounts of collected data from many apps in a single, easy to use platform that is friendly to both developers, QA and product managers. When feedback is submitted, it’s already an issue in JIRA complete with comprehensive data and a video that makes the situation crystal clear. Reproducing and resolving bugs is made that much easier, saving time and helping Stanwood ship out better products, faster.And when you need someone to talk to, TestFairy’s team is ready and happy to help out, only a short chart away.
More case studies