Sentry this week announced it has acquired Specto, a provider of a set of tools for analyzing the performance of mobile applications.
As the number of mobile applications being deployed continues to expand, developers are being asked to manage them as part of a general shift left that requires them to take on more accountability for how well their applications run in a production environment.
Sentry CEO Milin Desai said today the Specto tools are focused on making it easier for developers to determine how mobile applications are running, but that the plan is to expand that analytics capability to a wider range of applications.
Of course, DevOps teams are already collecting metrics, as well. Sentry has worked with partners such as GitLab and GitHub to provide a plug-in that makes it possible for DevOps teams to see the same metrics that developers are now using to manage applications. The goal is to make it easier for developers and IT operations teams to collaborate around a common set of metrics, said Desai.
The rate at which responsibility for the management of applications is being shifted left, of course, varies widely. Some organizations continue to prefer to have developers mainly focus on writing code. However, Desai said Sentry is encountering more instances where site reliability engineers (SREs) are providing Sentry tools to developers as part of an effort to provide them with more insight into how their applications are running in a production environment.
Historically, IT operations teams have relied on application performance management (APM) platforms to manage IT operations. Those platforms are now evolving into observability platforms that promise to provide more context by correlating events as they occur across both applications and IT infrastructure platforms. That approach, however, typically requires developers to insert agent software into their applications. Once inserted, that agent software needs to be maintained and updated within the context of a larger DevOps workflow.
The Sentry approach provides developers with a tool for collecting data from an application that, after being embedded in the application, consumes just tens of kilobytes of memory. That approach eliminates the need to rely on much larger agent software to achieve observability.
Regardless of how developers go about instrumenting their applications, the overall state of observability clearly needs to improve as application environments become more complex. The issue now is determining how best to achieve that goal in a way that benefits both developers and DevOps teams alike.