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We are developing a mobile game (using Unity3D). We report various game analytics events to our backend systems so they can be aggregated and analyzed later on.

I've recently watched this session from GDC on game telemetry: http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1012227/Development-Telemetry-in-Video-Games

I was wondering whether telemetry and analytics were in fact the same thing? They seem to be related to one another, although may have different use cases...

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I would assume telemetry is the raw data, and analytics is .. well.. analytic interpretation of that data. \$\endgroup\$ – Kromster Jan 24 '16 at 6:56
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Strictly, they're just words.

Telemetry is the act of gathering data remotely from your game:

Telemetry is an automated communications process by which measurements are made and other data collected at remote or inaccessible points and transmitted to receiving equipment for monitoring. The word is derived from Greek roots: tele = remote, and metron = measure.

Analytics is the search for patterns in the data that you've gathered:

Analytics is the discovery and communication of meaningful patterns in data. Especially valuable in areas rich with recorded information, analytics relies on the simultaneous application of statistics, computer programming and operations research to quantify performance. Analytics often favors data visualization to communicate insight.

Software packages tend to provide one or the other (or some combination of both), but also tend to use the terminology interchangeably if it's for marketing or branding purposes. In other words, just because a product uses the term "analytics" in its name doesn't mean it only provides analysis, it may also provide a mechanism or hooks for gathering the source telemetry as well.

You probably wouldn't confuse anybody if you interchange the terms now and then, as they're broadly understood to be fairly related to eachother.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ We are currently reporting "telemetry" (?) data to backend services for processing and analysis. None of this is done for development purposes (e.g: help finding bugs, tracking the stability of a feature, providing context for more actionable bug reports, etc). I thought that analytics were reported for "business" purposes while telemetry is strictly reporting for all purposes. But i guess i wasn't right. \$\endgroup\$ – spaceOwl Jan 28 '16 at 7:19

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