Make sure your app is ready to perform heroic work for police, firefighters, EMTs, state and federal agencies across the country: 15 million people responding in dangerous conditions, to life-or-death situations where every second makes a difference. For rigorous quality control, choose the testing tools and platform that are most appropriate for your app. The developer should have mature testing processes to ensure quality in functional effectiveness, usability, stability, performance, and load.
We recommend you select an Application Lifecycle Management Platform to track requirements, manage projects, release and support different versions of your app. An industry-leading platform is JIRA Software from Atlassian. You may learn more about this product and license it at Atlassian Jira.
You may develop the apps using any programming language on the Mobile Application Development Platform (MADP) of your choice. We encourage you to decide early the mobile platform you wish to deploy your app on. If your app is going to be launched either only on an Android platform or an iOS platform, you may choose to use development platforms available specifically for those platforms. If your app is going to be used on both Android and iOS, select a cross-platform development environment where you can develop your app once for use on both platforms. For your convenience, here are quick links to key development resources available in the market:
- Android ™ App Development
- iOS™ App Development
- Cross-platform Development:
If you are interested in learning more about Kony’s cross-platform development, explore these downloadable resources:
If you have an existing app that you want to distribute through the App Catalog, review the FirstNet Development Guidelines to make sure your app meets our requirements. If you’ve already done this, skip straight to Submit.
FirstNet expects that public safety apps listed on the App Catalog have gone through rigorous quality controls. You may choose the testing tools and platform that are most appropriate for your app, but we expect you to have mature testing processes to validate quality in functional effectiveness, usability, stability, performance, and load testing.
Prior to submitting your app for review and certification, we strongly recommend you download the AT&T Video Optimizer – offered free of charge to assess how well your app is performing. FirstNet App Review Process uses AT&T Video Optimizer, a diagnostic tool for optimizing mobile app performance to evaluate the performance of submitted apps. The tool assesses how your app uses critical resources like battery, data, network resources and can help you improve your end-user's app and video streaming experience.
Source Code Scanning Tools (needed for FirstNet Certified only):
Note: FirstNet Listed category does not require a security scan report to be submitted.
Public Safety Relevancy
Whatever your focus area -- computer aided dispatch, field reporting, or situational awareness, just to name a few -- all applications submitted must explicitly demonstrate relevancy to public safety, law enforcement, fire services, emergency services, and public safety support services. Applications that don’t clearly demonstrate industry-relevancy will be rejected.
For both everyday and emergency use, applications must be designed to seamlessly scale to support the demands of FirstNet Public Safety users. As our user base increases, the application must be able to scale without negative impact to end users. As the FirstNet solution grows and matures, developers are encouraged to design capability that supports load spikes in the event of a variety of emergency situations.
Note: Apps certified as FirstNet Listed Apps may have a lower scalability requirement.
As the FirstNet network expands, more and more public safety users will rely on applications created to advance their important, dangerous work. Due to the nature of this industry, uptime of an application is a critical component. First responders work around the clock, making it imperative that applications and their related middleware and backend support users with high availability and minimal downtime.
Note: Apps categorized as FirstNet Listed Apps may have a lower availability requirement.
Public safety end users work in a variety of scenarios that demand resiliency: different device form factors, operating system versions and network types, to name a few. Because of their often unpredictable environment, users may confront a multitude of situations that could result in a failure of the application, the background service, or something as simple as an API call. Developers must make ensure their apps handle exceptions flexibly with minimal effect on the user experience.
Applications that store and use data either provided by end users or systematically gathered must keep data secure and private. Developers should include policies that comply with applicable privacy regulations around data collection and distribution -- including minimizing data collection and distribution.
Applications should be designed to make the least negative impact on an end user’s device. Developers should optimize battery, storage, and network usage of their apps, for example, to guarantee high-quality experience.
Developers must utilize the AT&T Video Optimizer to analyze the apps performance. During the course of the scan, the developer must fully exercise the entire functionality of the app. The developer should review the results of the report, fix any identified issues, and produce a new report. The final Video Optimizer scan result must be provided as part of the app submission in App Control. This includes a zip of the trace directory.
The developer should ensure the name of the app and the version number are in the filename of the report.
Developers must demonstrate they have taken the proper steps to ensure application security. That security extends from the device all the way to any backend services needed to help the application successfully function, and everywhere in between. From data encryption on the device to penetration testing of the service as a whole, security must always be top of mind.
FirstNet is committed to providing the public safety community with highly secure apps. In order to do so, developers must provide both the security scan and Video Optimizer scan results as part of their app submission in App Control, with the accompanying Developer Checklist.
Apps hosted in third party stores and cross-listed in the App Catalog, will be audited to ensure version alignment and security.
If any version differences or vulnerabilities are found, FirstNet will notify the developer of the version mismatch and the app will be disabled from further distribution in the App Catalog until the developer has submitted a new version and/or remediation plans/commitment date of fix.
Version Updates and Found Vulnerabilities
In instances of undocumented version updates or vulnerabilities found in published products:
- The developer must submit a new app version and/or remediation plans/commitment date of fix within 5 business days from notice
- If the developer does not take action after 8 business days from notice, all apps under review for the developer will be halted
- If the developer does not take action after 33 business days from notice, the developer and all of their apps will be removed
Developers must provide both the security scan and Video Optimizer scan results as part of their app submission in App Control, with the accompanying Developer Checklist for all code-based changes to the app.
To update an app from a version that is under review:
You may only have one version of an app in the FirstNet App Review process at a time. If you would like to submit a new version of an app that currently has a version in the FirstNet App Review Process, then you must first withdraw the version that is under review.
To update an app from an approved version that has not yet been released
If you have an app that has been approved but not released, you may submit an update of that app without withdrawing the one that has been approved. Once the newer version of the app has been approved, the older version can be withdrawn.
To update an app from a live version in the App Catalog
For each version change of an app, the developer must submit a new app version in App Control with the source code security scan and performance scan reports.
When a new version of an app that is currently live in the App Catalog is approved and released, the previous version is made inactive and will no longer be available in the App Catalog.
You can make an update based on any version of your app by using the Copy button. This button copies all the relevant data from the selected version and creates a draft submission for you to edit and submit for review. Certain fields (release date, version number, version notes, and the app binary) will not be copied – it is required that you update these fields.
When a new version of an app that is currently live in the App Catalog is approved and released, the previous version becomes inactive and will no longer be available in the App Catalog.
Cloud Services Offered for Purchase
FirstNet Developer Program offers the following list of Cloud Services for purchase.
- Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): IBM Soft Layer.
- Storage as a Service (StaaS): Cloud Storage.
- Software as a Service (SaaS):
- Platform as a Service (PaaS): IBM Blue Mix.
- Cloud Disaster Recovery Services.
Our fully-managed cloud data recovery solutions provide disaster recovery and business continuity protection for your critical data.
Fully-managed testing and recovery of applications and data on a highly-secure, enterprise class cloud platform features:
- 365 24/7 Operational Support Desk
- Disaster Declaration submission online or by phone
- No cost Alerts to put recovery teams on notice in the event of an actual Disaster Declaration
- Geographically dispersed Recovery Centers
- Multi-platform functionality supporting physical servers and/ or virtual machines
- On-demand scalability of networks, storage and compute capacity
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