Crittercism targets its mobile app monitoring service at enterprises


Rob Kwok, Crittercism CTO

Credit: Crittercism

With $30 million in new funding.


Crittercism, which offers technology that monitors mobile apps for problems, has brought in $30 million in new funding, and will use that money in part to chase the enterprise market.

Crittercism started out targeting makers of consumer apps and now counts Netflix, Groupon, Yahoo, and Pinterest among customers. Those customers use a Crittercism dashboard too see if performance problems are due to bad code or network failures, for example.

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Crittercism dashboard

When users are notified of a problem, they can delve into more detail, pinpointing the line of code that's causing an issue, for instance. They can check other parameters too, like which OS and device the user has, how much memory is being used, and whether the user is connecting to Wi-Fi or cellular. They can also access details like what version of the app a user with a problem has and what buttons the user had hit leading up to an app crash.

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Crittercism dashboard

While Crittercism began by serving businesses that build consumer apps, those customers began using Crittercism to monitor internally facing apps as well, said Rob Kwok, CTO and co-founder of the company. Over the past year or two, the company also has begun attracting more traditional businesses that use the product to monitor internal apps, including Nike, Home Depot, and Urban Outfitters.

As businesses move more and more critical functions to mobile apps, they find it's more important that they're able to keep those apps running, he said. "[IT departments] get complaints saying the app is broken in the latest update but the ops team will have no data to back it up. They don't know if they should roll it back," he said.

Crittercism aims to help enterprises use the service with a new App Wrapping tool that it's unveiling today. The company found that 80 percent of internal enterprise mobile apps are built by third party developers. The app wrapper lets IT admins use Crittercism to monitor apps that they distribute via an enterprise app store, even if they didn't build the app -- or even if they don’t have a dev team. Without the App Wrapper, a customer uses a Crittercism SDK and adds code to the app in order to monitor it.

The company also today introduced an API so that customers can integrate the app performance data with server monitoring products they may already use.

In the future, Crittercism hopes to do more sharing of the data it collects.

"A lot of companies that use our product today have a crash rate of 2 percent or 3 percent and the most common question we get is, 'is that good or bad compared to our competitors?'" Kwok said.

About a week ago Crittercism released its first report on some common metrics and hopes to be able to do more to share information based on what it's learning from customers -- Crittercism is now monitoring about a billion monthly active users, he said. It has dribbled out bits of information in the past

Crittercism isn't the only business delivering mobile app monitoring products. AppDynamics and Keynote also offer monitoring services and New Relic, which is better known for Web service monitoring, has also gotten into the mobile world. Taking steps to target the enterprise and offering tools that let customers integrate Crittercism's service with existing monitoring tools are good ways for it to try to get ahead of competitors. 

The new investors include Scale Venture Partners, InterWest Partners, and VMware.

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