Project Description

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a mobile first paradigm

by Leena Iyar on February 26, 2016

mobility-brief

BRIEF a mobile first paradigm

INTRODUCTION

Moxtra’s decade-long commitment to mobility has enabled its founding team to bring exceptional products  to market.

The name “Moxtra” is coined from the words, “Mobile,” highlighting a deep commitment to mobile innovation, and “Extra,” emphasizing Moxtra’s unique platform. The robust developer toolkit that offers over 200 byte-sized APIs and SDKs allows Moxtra’s technology to be embedded in other applications and technologies with ease and efficiency.

THE FOUNDERS

subrah iyar, CEO & co-founder

stanley huang, CTO & co-founder

A HISTORY IN MOBILE COLLABORATION

In the 1990’s, Subrah Iyar, CEO of Moxtra, co-founded Webex. Webex revolutionized the business world by allowing meetings to be conducted remotely and on-the-go with voice and video conferencing, and screen sharing.

As the technology landscape has evolved around mobile, Moxtra’s founding team was ahead of the curve working towards a lifelong passion of building the world’s first truly mobile collaboration platform.

The above image illustrates major platform shifts through the course of history. The platform shift to mobile is expected to be the largest volume shift in history (i.e., 10x-100x more users than earlier). Moxtra’s team foresaw this upcoming trend several years ago and has invested significant resources to create and maintain a lead in this emerging market.

MOBILE FIRST PHILOSOPHY: HUMAN CENTERED DESIGN

Moxtra has created a mobile first communication and collaboration platform tuned for business use. The worldwide rise in mobile adoption is accompanied with the dramatic increase in the use of on-demand consumer services. The experiences from these services drive business user’s on-demand expectations.  These users expect to increasingly use their mobile devices for their day-to-day business activities and get team projects done easily and spontaneously while they are on the go.    

The Moxtra platform provides embeddable, multilayered collaboration services tuned to serve these high user expectations. The platform is built for embedding collaboration into existing workflows. This embeddable capability ensures that business users can stay within the context of their work without having to switch in and out of different applications for collaboration. This is a critical need for mobile business users. The platform’s collaboration capabilities include complete document collaboration capabilities (synchronous and asynchronous) developed around a visually compelling interface designed for mobile devices. This combination of embeddability and rich collaboration makes Moxtra unique in serving the needs of business users.

Moxtra’s familiar messaging interface allows the easy import of documents into a business conversation flow. Powerful visual and audio annotation capabilities enable team members to communicate by interacting upon these documents. Members can escalate conversations instantaneously into online meetings with voice, video and screen sharing, enabling rich spontaneous communications. To-Dos can be assigned on the go to team members to ensure accountability and task completion. These rich and powerful capabilities provide a comprehensive set of services targeted to serve the collaboration needs of business users.

moxtra full integrated stream flow

MOBILE FIRST PHILOSOPHY: MULTILAYERED COLLABORATION

The Moxtra platform provides multiple layers of collaboration. These layers can be easily customized and embedded as component modules in a use-what-you-need mode. Our suite of SDKs and APIs provide can enable these capabilities with the addition of just 10 lines of code. All of these component modules are designed mobile-first, but not mobile only and fully support desktop environments as well.

Further description of these collaboration layers are as follows:

MESSAGING LAYER

The Messaging Layer supports group chat, 1-1 chat and file sharing. This layer supports the  uploading, downloading and sharing of virtually any file types. Up to 1,000 participants in any group chat are allowed. Documents uploaded into the chat (i.e., shared files) can be viewed within a Messaging stream.  Each message stream is associated with a ‘Binder’ that stores all of the material shared in a message stream for easy access and referral by team members. This layer supports sophisticated file management, archival, sharing with and access to social media besides on-demand access to and from major public or private cloud repositories. In addition, the built-in global notifications system supports robust push notifications across PC, iOS and Android platforms.

FILE LAYER

The File Layer allows users to preview the documents embedded in the Messaging Layer. Users can add audio, visual, text annotations, and digital signatures onto any document. All of these are stored in the Binder associated with a conversation. Uploaded documents are automatically compressed in PDF format to accelerate the rendering of the file with annotations in Moxtra. Users can download or share the annotated PDF (or original file) in real-time. In addition, users can create dynamic video recordings layering voice over the screen with VoIP and simultaneously add annotations and visual cues in recorded videos to create sophisticated video tutorials, training material, on-boarding videos etc. besides using these services  to conduct internal auditing of online meetings.

TASK LAYER

The Task Layer allows users to set To-Do’s that are embedded and tracked inside a messaging stream (i.e., Messaging Layer). This layer enables setting task due dates for project management with reminders. Additionally users can attach relevant content embedded in a message stream to relevant tasks, duplicate, copy and move tasks to new project. The Tasks associated with a messaging stream are also stored in the Binder associated with this conversation.

REAL TIME LAYER

The Real-Time layer enables instantaneous online meetings within the context of a messaging stream. Our real-time services include VOIP, Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), Video, Desktop Sharing and Real-time Chat services. Our Hosted Voice service provides PBX-like voice capabilities—without the PBX. This suite thus provides a full set of unified communications features within a messaging stream.

CROSS PLATFORM

The collaboration layer functionalities of Moxtra are delivered cross platform and streamlined which means that it is compatible across various platforms like iOS, Android, JavaScript and RESTful APIs. This cross platform capability makes Moxtra services work seamlessly from within 3rd party  apps offering integrated meaningful, and engaging experiences in the context of our partner brands.  This cross platform support for various platforms include: iOS: We support iOS SDK 6.0 and onwards; Android: We support Android SDK 14.0 and onwards; JavaScript: We are supported by any HTML5 browser that is compatible with web applications; RESTful API: We also support accessing Moxtra app content with simple HTTP methods.

CUSTOM, STATE OF THE ART INFRASTRUCTURE

Moxtra’s underlying infrastructure is custom built to support mobility. It incorporates the business needs of security, integration, administration, performance, scalability, and cost. Some of the details are as follows:

INFRASTRUCTURE: SECURITY

Moxtra is designed with multiple layers of security as well. These security layers cover data transfer, encryption, network configuration, and application-level controls, all distributed across a scalable, secure infrastructure. Moxtra also exhibits high security in two different cases:

Data in Transit: To protect data in transit, Moxtra uses Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)/ Transport Layer Security (TLS) for data transfer, creating a secure tunnel protected by 128-bit or higher Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption. Data in transit between a Moxtra client (currently desktop, mobile, API, or web) and the hosted service is always encrypted via SSL/TLS. For Moxtra end points (desktop and mobile) and modern browsers, Moxtra uses strong ciphers and supports perfect forward secrecy. Individual sessions are identified and re-verified with each transaction, using a unique token created at login.

Data at Rest: Sever Side Encryption(SSE) is used to encrypt the data stored at rest. Server Side Encryption employs strong multi-factor encryption. Each object is encrypted with a unique key. As an additional safeguard, this key itself is encrypted with a regularly rotated master key. Server Side Encryption uses one of the strongest block ciphers available – 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-256) – to encrypt your data.

INFRASTRUCTURE: SEARCH, CONNECTIVITY, INTEGRATION

Search Farm: The Moxtra Search Farm is responsible for providing fast and accurate search results so that users can find relevant content from across Multiple Binders.

Email Engine: Our email engine enables the parsing of incoming emails to relevant binders. This enables engaging on incoming emails within the context of a messaging stream.

3rd Party Integration Services: This is a separate service dedicated to monitoring integrations configured with external services. The integration services handle authentication and all incoming data from various third party applications. It parses the incoming data payload and posts it to configured binders. Moxtra’s 200+ API endpoints and SDKs allow users to conduct sophisticated customizations of the UI, including font, logo and branding customizations.

INFRASTRUCTURE: ADMINISTRATION

The Moxtra Administrators Console allows selected “administrative” users to manage an organization’s users (i.e., User Management), monitor usage (i.e., Usage Reports), as well as customize the look and feel of the Moxtra application (i.e., Branding). Within User Management, Administrators can define user roles, user status (i.e. activated, deactivated, deleted, edited), can transfer binders/projects to other users, and can view binders owned and shared with individual users. Usage Reports allows Administrators to view analytics and details regarding number of binders owned and active, number of meetings, number of contacts, amount of storage used and more. With regards to Branding, Administrative users have the ability to edit the looks and feel (i.e., Logo, Colors, White-labeling, etc.) of the Moxtra application, binder covers and more.

INFRASTRUCTURE: HIGH PERFORMANCE

The Moxtra Job Server farm provides a cluster of servers that process all the requests coming in from the various service layers.  It streamlines internal processes by distributing the workload between the individual components of the farm to meet performance and high availability requirements. Moxtra delivers high performance since load balancing is done across multiple servers which ensures redundancy and a consistent communication experience for the end user. A powerful engine delivers messages and updates to geographically distributed users throughout multiple channels such as Apple push notifications, Google cloud messaging and web-based notifications. In the case of synchronous meetings Moxtra makes use of the concept of data switching for delivering real time communication services such as voice calls and screen sharing to increase performance.

INFRASTRUCTURE: NETWORK ADAPTABILITY

Mobile collaboration for business needs dependability and performance. However in many situations the underlying mobile network performance can be highly variable. Moxtra adapts to this variable network performance by optimizing the network’s bandwidth usage. This adaptation optimizes usage to help decrease the amount of transmitted data, reduce network congestion and improve performance. For example:

  • In the case of the Moxtra screen sharing service, only incremental changes are transmitted. This allows the optimal use of the underlying network bandwidth.
  • All content streams are compressed before being sent.
  • Pagination: Instead of downloading all data in one go, data is downloaded in batches enhancing performance.
  • Protocol Switching:  Moxtra’s default protocol is to send Audio and video data using UDP (User Datagram Protocol). However, if it is detected that packets are being lost during transmission, Moxtra switches the audio data switches to TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). This approach reduces network traffic and improves Moxtra’s performance.
  • Offline access: Users can use Moxtra even when they are offline. Moxtra caches recent data and information on the device. This allows users to access cached data easily. Uploaded files and to-dos are queued when the device is offline. As soon as the device is online, data is synced across all devices.

INFRASTRUCTURE: DYNAMICALLY SCALED

Moxtra is engineered for the mobile internet and is built to scale dynamically for millions of active users. Our cloud platform is transparent to app developers and will scale automatically as the app acquires new users. Every component in Moxtra is horizontally scalable. Moxtra is designed to work across different platforms and devices and is scalable to millions of devices of users. Individual developers can save millions of dollars in R&D and several years of time-to-market by leveraging the Moxtra SDK. Moxtra hides the complex infrastructure and yet showcases high scalability, availability and optimal performance for real-time applications. Moxtra also offers enterprise-grade security with multilayered encryption of all data and traffic.  Moxtra’s data centers are geographically distributed. We also have data centers across USA, Europe, South America and Asia.

Every component of the Moxtra platform is designed for rapid horizontal scalability (from individual users to many millions of users). With a robust Q system for backend job handling, and a scalable No-SQL distributed data farm, Moxtra is designed to grow with customers. Moxtra leverages a unique infrastructure of Data Centers and software to accommodate perfectly:

  • Load Scalability: The ability for a distributed system to easily expand and contract its resource pool to accommodate heavier or lighter loads or number of inputs.
  • Geographic Scalability: The ability to maintain performance, usefulness, or usability regardless of expansion from concentration in a local area to a more distributed geographic pattern.

OEM PARTNER BENEFITS: RICH COLLABORATION

Moxtra leverages richness and depth of features that covers  the entire spectrum of the collaboration needs of mobile business users. Being modular and device agnostic, provides a lot of flexibility for OEMs to customize a mobile collaboration service built-in to their solutions.

OEM PARTNER BENEFITS: EASE OF USE

Moxtra’s architecture is designed with simplicity and intuitiveness in mind. This means that our Native SDKs can be embedded out-of-the-box in no more than a few minutes and with a few lines of code. Rigorously tested REST APIs provide for easy authentication and implementation of key features. 3rd party Integration via WebHooks can make Moxtra the “Mission Control” (i.e., notification center) of all applications within an ecosystem. With comprehensive Developer Docs and Tools, Moxtra’s API and SDK platform is simultaneously one of the simplest and richest collaboration platforms in the market today catering specifically to the needs of OEMs.

OEM PARTNER BENEFITS: FLEXIBLE

Embeddability is a key focus for the Moxtra platform. Moxtra’s modular SDKs and APIs can be segmented and embedded piece-by-piece,  seamlessly enhancing a partner solution. To ensure a consistent look and feel, solution partners can leverage their branding within the embedded Moxtra modules with customizable UI components. Moxtra allows single sign on and user authentication from within partners solutions providing for  multiple modes of authentication, from SAML, to Simplified SSO to OAuth and beyond.

OEM PARTNER BENEFITS: TECHNICAL ADVANTAGES

Moxtra has built a state of the art solution on a custom built infrastructure for mobile collaboration. This infrastructure incorporates the OEM partner needs for security, integration, administration, performance, scalability, and cost. These services have been built over several years by a team with over a decade of experience in collaboration. This provides a very compelling proposition for OEMs looking to quickly  establish a leadership position in the fast growing market for mobile collaboration services.