Stronger Together: Why Giving Your Developers a Better Platform Produces Better Experiences

A Smith

In the world of digital, there is perhaps nothing that will impact the lives of subscribers quite like a transformative mobile app. However, when we talk about technology and digital offerings, it is often only the end-user experience and “last-mile” journey that receives the majority of the attention. Before the subscriber can even download an app, there is a considerable amount of effort put into making that app a reality.

Compelling vs. Confusing

Apps are created based on what journeys the managed service provider wants to offer based on regulations, marketing and other vital factors. Every app is tasked to and created by a developer, with each developer coming to the table with a specific set of skills and expertise. Finding the right development team is a task that has proven to be challenging for many firms, as hiring managers discover that the talent pool decreases as the technology becomes more specific and complex. Even when skilled mobile app developers are brought on to a project, they are often faced with many roadblocks, as often the telco BSS platform behind the app may expose an overly technical set of APIs requiring a deep understanding of telco domain and constructs. Bottom-line: If developers find the underlying platform and APIs to be complex, it limits their ability to provide a compelling digital user experience through the mobile app in a timely fashion.

Time is Money

One of the biggest challenges mobile app design agencies face is improving time-to-market without compromising on the digital experience. While many developers come on board with a broad set of mobile app development and UX capabilities, they may not have the necessary knowledge base in areas of:

  • Telco domain
  • BSS platform specific technical APIs and pricing constructs
  • API routing, aggregation and transformation

With such a complex list of requirements that are frequently seen as cumbersome, it isn’t surprising that creating these mobile channel digital experiences sometimes run into complications and delays. Educating developers and getting them up to speed on specific platform technology can be time-consuming, and can significantly delay a project’s launch date.

A Better Experience Starts with the Platform

We set out to solve this problem right at the integration pain-point by developing a robust mobile SDK infrastructure, ensuring that the coding complexity for required logic is greatly simplified. By making it possible for mobile app developers to create what is expected, quickly and efficiently, the need for a higher level of technical expertise on MATRIXX is substantially reduced. As a result, app developers no longer need familiarity with telecom lingo or complex and rich constructs of a pricing model to be able to provide compelling digital journeys utilizing the underlying richness of MATRIXX.

To enable rapid and flexible integration, our platform’s mobile channel server suite includes a set of standard ReST based APIs, including subscriber management and product purchase. The mobile channel server API Gateway is designed to provide maximum flexibility, so that operator-specific transaction logic can be used to extend or override the standard settings. By allowing for overrides, we make it easier to design, build or update end-user experiences while utilizing underlying aggregated technical services. More broadly, any external system can make use of our channel server’s web-friendly and render-ready APIs, decreasing the scope of transformation work needed by external adaptors or External Service Buses.

Rapid Integration Enablement

To facilitate this rapid application development, there is a mobile SDK API toolkit that showcases standards and best practices, and enables users to apply framework elements and logical building blocks to create digital services. It supports the business functions and developer-friendly capabilities as ‘services’ packaged in SDK so that SDKs can be consumed with minimal effort and cost with a clear scope and purpose. Now, a mobile application developer no longer needs a full understanding of the overall platform because the SDK API toolkit provides:

  • Event view for self-care apps that meet specific business cases with precise, real-time information for significant user and system activities required for self-care apps
  • Extensibility and aggregation capabilities that allow over-riding a default behavior, or grouping with an external source of information
  • Enhanced resources to add additional information, or filter the results of queries to make the results more consumable by external systems
  • Both developer and end-user authentication that provides a validated and authorized entry point for access of platform
  • Push notification adaptors that enable sending in-app announcements to subscribers to build journeys for an ‘always connected’ end-user experience
  • As the platform evolves and new services are added there is access to common business logic, rules and data

This toolkit provides a practical solution for implementation with both Android and iOS native sample apps. It minimizes the total life-cycle cost, reduces the cycle time required for developing capabilities and facilitates business agility. In addition, these APIs dramatically improve business and IT agility by allowing service providers and partners to use them by abstracting underlying complexity. Undoubtedly, the potential implications for a service provider’s business are far-reaching, particularly for large applications.

A Better Experience for Everyone

End-to-end, the platform gives developers the comprehensive and precise data that is required when designing these self-care apps for subscribers. The ability to innovate and integrate rapidly is vital for business technology and is demanded in this modern digital economy.

By enhancing the process through the SDK API toolkit, organizations have the opportunity to hire developers from a larger technical community, remain accountable and are equipped to support developers throughout the “middle-miles.” Because of these benefits, everyone’s journey improves, providing true customer engagement.

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