What is Firebase Predictions?

How much data does it use?

It uses Google Analytics for Firebase as a data source and takes the last 100 days of user activity. It trains and evaluates/holds out the data and generates predictions for the next 7 days. Also, it calculates the accuracy of predicted values for the last 14 days.

How useful is it for product owners/project managers?

Looking user analytics data helps to track how the project is going. Defining KPIs and following them is the most important part of the project. Because KPIs enable people to see if a project achieves key business objectives. On the other side, machine learning algorithms are widely used to predict user interactions and improve business goals. Firebase Predictions are likely to help to achieve these goals without spending a lot of resources. It has predictions for churn and spend by default. For instance, if your project is using a freemium model, you can predict which users are likely to not spend money. So, you can improve your conversion rate by focusing on these users by offering them some discounts or extra advantages.

Which services can we integrate with Firebase Predictions?

Firebase gives the capability to combine its tools like Remote Config with Predictions. Remote Config is another Firebase service that lets us change the behavior and appearance without forcing the user to update the app. Combination of Predictions with Remote Config is an awesome start. This means we can change the app according to user behavior predictions while on the live.

How to start using Firebase Predictions?

First, Firebase Predictions uses Analytics events that correlated to predictions. It means that you have to use Firebase Analytics as an event tracker. If you’re already using Analytics, you need to enable Analytics Data Sharing. Then you’ll be able to enable Predictions for the project.

What is risk tolerance level?

Remote Config with Firebase Predictions

Usage of Remote Config inside the apps really affects how to use Firebase Predictions. If you’re already using Remote Config you can adjust your values according to the predictions. If you’re not using Remote Config, please check the documentation first for the setup.

A/B Testing with Firebase Predictions

These two new features are perfect for each other. Combination of them opens a lot of doors for every business. Creating a new A/B test experiment is easy. First, go to Remote Config section in the Firebase Console. You’ll see the A/B Testing button in the upper right corner. When you click it, you’ll see three sections as Running, Draft and Completed. Click Create Experiment button. It’ll start the creating experiment process. Name the experiment and choose your Firebase Predictions enabled app like in Remote Config. After this, you’ll be able to see prediction values. You can choose one of them and continue to the process. I won’t get into more details for all A/B testing process in Firebase. Because it’s another blog post subject on its own.

Notifications with Firebase Predictions

Lastly, we can integrate Firebase Cloud Messaging with Firebase Predictions. If you’re not using Firebase Cloud Messaging, you can take a look at the documentation. When you enter Notifications in Firebase Console, you can click to New Message button. In the opening screen, enter your analytics event name to “Message label” section. Choose “User segment” from Target section and do the same as we did for A/B testing. Then, choose the app which you enabled Firebase Predictions in the target conditions. And add another condition for prediction. Choose the prediction value and risk tolerance level in there.

Final Words

Machine learning algorithms are in use for decades but interest is drastically increased in the last years. The hard part of applying machine learning algorithms to businesses arises from the complexity and collecting data. Even if every business collects data from users, they are not able to use machine learning algorithms to predict future actions of their users. Introduction of Firebase Predictions seems like a solution to this problem. Google Analytics is already a leader in analytics world and Google Analytics for Firebase is becoming a standard in the mobile world. Google takes a big step to help all businesses by applying machine learning algorithms on big chunks of precious analytics data. We’ll see together how it’s going to achieve its goal.


Developer Mind

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Candost Dağdeviren

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iOS/Software Developer. Curious. Writes about tech & science. Editor @theswiftpostco.

Developer Mind

Thoughts, experiences and knowledge sharing from software developers