This is the third article in the Q&A series. I will be answering some of the most-asked questions about Google Analytics and how it works. If you’ve missed the previous articles, you can access Part 2 (What is the bounce rate in Google Analytics) and see what questions we answered there.

How to use Analytics for mobile apps, Google Analytics vs Firebase Analytics

In this article, I will give you an answer to the following questions:

  • How Google Analytics works for mobile apps?
  • What are the differences between Firebase Analytics and Google Analytics?

How Google Analytics works for mobile apps?

Instead of using JavaScript, for mobile apps, you will be using an SDK. That is a Software Development Kit and it’s what collects the data from your mobile application. As most smartphones are either Android and iOS based, you will have different SDK’s based on the operating system.

The SDK works similarly as the JavaScript and collects data like the number of users and sessions, the session duration, the operating system, the device model and the location. All of that is packed in hits and sent to your Google Analytics account. Here is an overview from The Google Analytics Help Center.

The main difference is that the data is not sent right away. Because a mobile device might not have a connection to the internet at some points in time, the data is stored on the device and is sent when it is eventually connected. The process is called dispatching and it’s done at different time intervals on Android and on iOS. On Android, the hits are dispatched every 30 minutes and on iOS, every 2 minutes. Those numbers can be customised though.

Keep in mind that you can customise the code so that you can track different data in case you feel the base code is not sufficient for you.

What are the differences between Firebase Analytics and Google Analytics?

How to use Analytics for mobile apps, Google Analytics vs Firebase Analytics