Google sharpening Analytics' tracking of mobile applications

A new set of reports due later this summer will provide broader, more specific usage metrics to makers of mobile applications

Google is readying a new set of Analytics usage reports designed specifically for mobile applications, the company plans to announce at its I/O developer conference on Friday.

So far, Google Analytics has approached mobile application tracking from a perspective that's more tailored to conventional websites, said JiaJing Wang, a Google product manager.

With these new reports, Google Analytics will provide results for iOS and Android applications that include deeper, broader and more specific metrics, he said.

"Application developers and marketers need to have a profound understanding of their mobile applications' usage," Wang said.

One set of reports will focus on measuring new and active users of an application, the different versions in use and the devices it's being installed on, as well as how people are finding it on the Google Play store.

Another set of reports will zero in on engagement data, such as the frequency with which people use the application, the length of sessions and the in-application usage patterns, as well as trends in crashes and bugs.

"You have to know what users are doing before you can make meaningful improvements to your mobile applications," he said.

A third type of report will focus on tracking the attainment of specific outcomes, such as ad clicks, in-app purchases or pre-determined session duration goals.

The new reports are expected to be available to all Analytics users by the end of the summer as part of version 2.0 of the Analytics mobile SDK (software development kit).

Those interested in trying out the new reports can send Google a request to be beta testers.

Google will also release a new Analytics application for Android devices so that Analytics users can check their accounts and reports from their Android smartphones.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

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