While we love everything that technology does for us, including making work and life easier, especially now that there are so many available apps on our mobile devices, we don't love it when it doesn't work. Often, the issue with software, whether for desktop or mobile devices, is a pesky thing known as a bug.

The software bug is some type of problem within the code that stops certain processes within the software from working correctly. For the user, this can become irritating or even cause them to not want to use the software anymore. That means software bugs can cause financial and brand damage for a company that has to contend with them.

Damages Done

There are numerous examples where these software bugs have led to some much larger problems for the organizations that experienced them. For example, software bugs for Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina led to thousands of people being enrolled in the wrong health insurance. Even worse was the fact that it came out that the organization knew about the software flaws but implemented it anyway. Other examples include satellite failure, glitches in a F-35 jet fighter among its 8.3 million lines of code, and Hive's thermostat app, which led to continually setting the thermostat to a high temperature. And, when it comes to any type of financial app like for mobile banking or some type of payments platform, there are even greater concerns about any type of software bugs creating breaches in their security.

For software developers, these pesky bugs actually become an expensive proposition. According to available research, software bugs total approximately $60 billion annually in the U.S. For developers, their time, also worth money, becomes focused on trying to identify and fix these bugs.

By all accounts, some developers have noted that addressing software bugs can take up 75% of their work time. Just imagine what they could create and commercialize if they could use their time working on development instead of bugs.

Bug Extermination Strategies

Realizing the need for more solutions that can help developers to not spend so much time focused on debugging their software, many tools have been developed that help to test, identify, and validate results in a more efficient way. These debugging tools often have a suite of tests to gauge the possibility of different types of crashes that could be the problem.

While it is good to use a tool that provides identification of bugs and crashes, developers need more than just a raw report that lists the file and application where the problem is located. Although it is definitely a good strategy to employ, developers often need to dig even deeper and require some type of context for that bug or crash. Think of it like when a car makes a sound but then never repeats that sound when the owner brings it to the mechanic. The same kind of evasive nature can happen with software bugs where reproducing the problem may not be possible. That's when it is key to look for a debugging tool that can take it to the next level by showing how a user might have gotten to that condition and what type of sequence of events led for that crash or issue to happen at that point in time.

New solutions like those developed by Bugsee, that launched today are enabling mobile app developers to gather specific analytics that can help them see these actions as the user is in the midst of working with a particular app. This can significantly shorten the time it takes to identify and fix a bug, helping everyone from the developer, beta test, and user to the quality assurance employee. You can check them out on Product Hunt.

This ability to then quickly stabilize and deliver a quality app means it can reach the market faster as well as help to maintain a good reputation around the brand behind that app, keeping users on board and attracting more.

Published on: Jan 24, 2017