MixPanel Offers Realtime iPhone Analytics That Probably Won't Piss Off Apple

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Perhaps you recall back in June when Apple CEO Steve Jobs laid the smack down on mobile analytics firm Flurry. He noted they were “pissing us off” because they were collecting device data about Apple’s products. Specifically, Jobs obviously cared because it uncovered some as-yet-unannounced Apple products. A change Apple made to their developer agreements then made this illegal. And that’s where MixPanel saw an opening.

MixPanel has been a popular analytics company for about a year now. In fact, they recently announced they were tracking a billion actions a month across a wide variety of applications on the web. But that was only web applications (including Facebook apps), now they’re going mobile.

The company is launching an iPhone SDK library. By inserting just a few lines of code into their apps, customers will be able to get MixPanel data in realtime. And realtime is the key, while other analytics services say they have realtime data, MixPanel claims their’s is the fastest. “We’ve built better plumbing,” Founder Suhail Doshi says.

They also believe it’s the most comprehensive. While they aren’t tracking device data per Apple’s rules, they are offering “hardcore type analytics” that services have grown accustomed to on platforms like Facebook. For example, in an iPhone game, you could track which users choose which weapon when they play the game on a certain level. Or in an app like Yelp, you could tell which types of pages men keep coming back to.

Doshi compared the current crop of analytics services on the iPhone to Google Analytics — that is, more topical. He says MixPanel offers more “sophisticated tracking.”

The team has already been talking to a number of top app developers about using their service, which launches today. One of those is fellow Y Combinator company Posterous.

MixPanel plans to charge app developers based on the amount of data they’re collecting. This means that more popular apps will be charged more, as it should be. They’ll also offer badges that developers can put on their site to be able to use a certain amount of data for free, if they’re a startup.

Find out more in the video below.

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