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Published by Kedar Parikh on April 25, 2017

How S2S Integration makes App Activity Tracking a Cakewalk!

One of the most recent offerings of Netcore Smartech is Mobile App Activity Tracking.

To enable app activity tracking, implementing a relevant code, commonly referred as – Software Development Kit (SDK) is the standard way. This implementation drives all app-related engagement activities like push notifications, in-app messaging, and app-activity tracking. Netcore Smartech provides SDKs for various platforms supported with an easy-to-understand integration documentation for your aid. The SDKs are thoroughly tested on actual devices and AWS device farm to ensure compatibility across various versions of operating systems (i.e. Android/IOS) as well as multitude of device manufacturers. This method of device-to-server integration – also commonly referred as client-to-server or C2S, is an integration where a SDK is placed in the mobile app. This is most commonly preferred and used as well.

Although implementing SDK in your app is not very difficult, it can be a challenge if you already have an SDK in the app. Multiple SDK integrations imply more maintenance for developers and larger file sizes for users. The cost of switching to a new and possibly better SDK may be high due to vendor lock-in. Your company’s terms and policies may not allow integration of 3rd party SDKs into your app. Even if it is allowed, changing the SDK would require your app-users to update their apps. This might also be a deterrent for you because users may not do these app updates promptly. According to a report released by SafeDK, games as an app category, lead average SDK integration with 17.5 SDKs per app. And hence the internet is sprayed with the term “SDK-Fatigue”.

Although SDK integration in apps is simple, it is not as simple as web integration. If not implemented correctly, adding any SDK code could result in bugs in the app.  Taking a cue from the AdTech space, Netcore Smartech has adopted the Server-to-Server (S2S) integration approach for app activity tracking – as an alternative. This approach enables tracking activities in the mobile app without integrating any SDK in the app.

An S2S Integration method can be used without any code change required in the app. S2S integration requires that app installations and events are tracked on the client’s server side. Since this method involves server to server communication, all this tracked data is passed from parent server to tracking server.

This method is very useful if the code is outsourced to a third party vendor. In this case, the in-house development team may not have access to edit the source code of the app(s). Or, if as a marketer you are stuck between tracking app activities and your company’s policy of not allowing third party code integration, S2S integration is a saviour. Additionally, if you need app activity tracking before the next app update, S2S integration can help. A brief comparison between SDK integration and S2S integration can provide more clarity:

S2S App activity tracking

S2S integration enables app activity tracking whereas SDK integration enables in-app messaging along with tracking and notifications. Still, S2S integration is worth adopting for all the advantages it offers and the hassles it saves you from.

S2S working architechture

Recently, some of Netcore’s biggest e-commerce clients adopted S2S APIs for app activity tracking. Netcore Smartech could cater to some of the very key use cases like cart abandonment and wish list reminder emails for all their web and app users. Netcore Smartech could even geo-locate its API endpoints where the client’s servers are, for minimal latency between servers. These transactions are managed at servers which are built to achieve high volume and low latency.

Hassle-free app activity tracking has helped the clients in providing more real-time experience to their customers.

To get started with S2S integration, get in touch with us.

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Kedar Parikh

Kedar is AVP - Architect at Netcore Solutions and has strong skills in software engineering and architectural leadership, design, programming, troubleshooting, operations, production support & automation.

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