The process of integration after software development was time consuming in early days. Launching of the software would get delayed due to the time taken in the integration process even after the completion of the work. One reason for this was one-time integration of all the different bits at the last stages of the software development.
Later it was realized that integration needn’t be a stage during the software development process but a part of it as the adopted method was not efficient. This can be called as continuous integration. It is very advantageous for developers as well.
Delving a little deeper in Continuous Integration, we can say that it is a practice in software development process in which multiple integration is done every day by different members of the developing team. The errors are discovered and fixed quickly after the integration process as testing is performed after each integration.
Simply, every member of a team is assigned a particular job which need to be integrated in the app as soon as the work is completed. Thus there is regular integration and testing that make finding out and fixing errors easier for developers. So the final product is almost error free and there is uniformity in the code.
Since, mobile app development is skyrocketing in recent years. There is need for enhanced processes for app development that could save developers time and effort. Continuous Integration can play a vital role for it. The bugs and other related issues are identified in earlier stages so this process can be considered as efficient.
The need of continuous Integration in Mobile App Development
Several problems can be seen in the code during the assembling process as multiple developers work on it. Glitches, crashes and bugs are seen. These issues diminish in continuous integration as numerous developers can work individually. The code is tested after each integration and then implemented in the app.
CI can be applied in both Android as well as iOS platforms. The maintenance efficiency and app development speed can be increased with automation in CI. As a result, the app has better performance that makes the user happy. So the app gets better ratings and reviews along with more number of downloads.
Influence of CI in the production cycle
The development of an app consists of the stages that include coding, building, testing, packaging and releasing. Configuring and monitoring is done after the release of the app. With CI, better efficiency can be achieved throughout the production cycle. Since bugs are smaller and fixing them requires less time at initial stages of development, the code can be made smooth and it’s integrity can be improved.
Requirements for CI implementation
Successful implementation of Continuous Integration requires the following prerequisites:
Version Control is used for keeping all of the building and deployment scripts such as database scripts, code and tests that are related to the project.
Involvement of stakeholders
The involvement of stakeholders at the time of need is one of the advantages of CI. Features of the app are created by developers and its quality is enhanced by quality engineers for the satisfaction of the user. Also, product owners interact with the users to know their experience regarding the app.
Harmony in work
Every member of the team needs to work in harmony with other members. The member responsible for fixing errors should fix it as soon as it is reported by another member. Everybody should work together throughout the entire development process.
Some things should be taken into consideration before the implementation of CI. The CI plan setup should be easy to use. Similarly, it should allow the integration of third party tools and all languages. It should also allow the checking of app on multiple scenarios by proving different builds.