Apple Invites App Developers To Its Secret Lab To Test Apple Watch
There are different ways to test the software. One is to take the software to the consumer and ask them to give feedback according to their experience. Another one is to bring the experts and development team together and work with them to eliminate bugs in the software. Apple is following the later approach with a slight variation for its Watch.
The Cupertino company is performing tests on its smartwatch which is to be released in April. The Watch is going through testing phase as the Cupertino company looks to kill all the bugs that may arise from the apps running on its smartwatch platform.
In efforts, Apple invited those app developers whose apps will be working on Watch. The testing team includes developers from Facebook, Starwood Hotels, United Continental Holdings Inc and Bayerische Motoren Werke AG. These developers are tasked with different challenges while testing their apps on the Watch, and remove any bugs that may arise during the phase. These challenges are designed to increase overall usability of the Watch.
For example, Apple believes that Watch should not buzz the user with notifications after every two minutes or so. So the devs are told that ideal time to interact with the Watch should not be more than 10 seconds.
“Not every email that lands in your inbox deserves to jerk you away from what you’re doing at that moment in time,” said Shawn Carolan, co-founder of Handle Inc and an early investor in Siri. “If your watch is buzzing every 15 seconds with a notification you are going to go crazy.”
Hence, the challenge for developers and Apple itself is to find the balance that will make apps useful and not annoying.
These outside testers are also required to follow rules set by Apple to avoid leakage of information. They can only bring source code of their apps in the hard drives which will remain in Apple’s secret lab where no internet is allowed. So they cannot upload the code and download it while inside the lab.
Apple believes doing so would minimize the possibility of leaking details about Apple Watch, as these developers are working hands-on with the units and their underlying platform.
“Apple, which will share more details about the gadget at a March 9 event, uses extreme measures to keep the work secret,” said an insider. “Internet access is blocked inside the rooms, and no outside materials can be brought in to the labs with the test watches.”
There are over 100 developers which are involved in this process. The challenges given to them show the capability of Apple to fine-tune its platform, and shows how they maintain good usability across their devices.