Firebase Mobile Platform Boosts Machine Learning, More
Google announced a bevy of improvements to its Firebase mobile development platform, including enhancements to machine learning, workflow integration, IDE support and more.
Firebase is a Mobile-Backend-as-a-Service (MBaaS) offering acquired by Google in 2014, providing mobile and Web app developers with services such as analytics, crash reporting, database and more.
Google has enhanced those services with the introduction of machine learning -- one of the hottest areas of the artificial intelligence space -- to aid components such as Firebase Predictions, which uses ML to help developers predict which users are likely to churn (drop an app), stay engaged with app, spend money or not, and so on.
After introducing Firebase Predictions a year ago as a beta offering, Google today (Oct. 29) announced it was moving into general availability, during Firebase Summit 2018 in Prague.
"Wondering what goes go into any given prediction?" said Francis Ma, head of product, in a blog post. "We added a new details page that shows you what factors the ML model considered (like events, device, user data, etc.) to make that prediction. We also now expose performance metrics for each prediction, letting you see how the prediction has performed historically against actual user behavior, so you can better calibrate your risk tolerance level. And, if you want to do a deeper analysis of prediction data or use it in third party services, you can export your complete prediction dataset to BigQuery."
The company also boosted the functionality of another beta product, ML Kit, simplifying the use of ML for enterprise app developers at all levels.
"If you're new to the space you can use ML Kit's out-of-the-box APIs, like text recognition or face detection, or if you're more experienced you can bring your own custom TensorFlow Lite models and serve them through Firebase," said Ma in announcing the beta release of face contours for the face detection API, providing a range of new functionality.
Google also announced:
All of the above and more are detailed in more depth on the company's Firebase YouTube channel.
David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.