How to Win at Mobile App Testing
A bug-free mobile app is a myth. It is because mobile devices have limitations and overcoming those limitations for any mobile app development company is implausible.
The only thing you can do about bugs is to catch and destroy them before your customers find out.
Typically, a mobile app development service provider has its own limitations; they majorly have to work around what is being given to them by OS providers and mobile device manufacturers.
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Mobile device screen sizes, their extensions and colors, a variety of operating system specifics and component configuration along with varying network connection at different data rates are some of the elements that make mobile app testing an indefinite process.
Besides, emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Internet of Things also put pressure on app developers to quickly learn and implement the technology into apps to make them advanced and more efficient.
All these factors make mobile app testing integral to the mobile app development process.
The Objectives of Mobile App Testing
Through mobile app testing, every company strives to achieve these 5 major goals:
- Functionality: To ensure that the functionality required by the mobile app owner has been met.
- Usability: The testing helps to determine that the app is usable, intuitive, and easy to use for the users, who are trying the application for the first time. It also helps the mobile application development company to ensure that the user’s journey throughout the application is smooth and convenient.
- Consistency: The testing helps to ensure that mobile app functions seamlessly on different platforms and provide good performance in uncertain conditions.
- Interruption: The key purpose of the mobile phone is to enable users to make and receive calls. This testing helps to ensure that the mobile app does not interrupt the core functions of the mobile phone like does not disconnect the call or not show messages received when the user is using the app.
- Security: The testing enables the mobile app development companies to determine the level of vulnerabilities to hacking, accessibility and authentication policies, data security, and other security standards.
Testing the mobile app for the bugs has two crucial aspects. One is to find the bugs and other is finding the source of the bugs. Your QA team can find the bugs, but it is on the app developers to find its source and remove it.
How to Achieve Mobile App Testing Objectives
To achieve the mobile app testing objectives, it is essential for the mobile app development company to build a strong QA team that ensures the highest degree of quality output.
The team members must be capable of conducting a thorough investigation of the software product while following an inquisitive and out-of-the-box thinking approach.
But, before we take a deep dive into the mobile app testing and how the QA team can achieve those objectives, let’s first understand the mobile app ecosystem.
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Testing could be carried out at any phase of coding, including after the launch. But at each stage, the process and devices must change, so as to efficiently tackle the sudden a change, such as the change in business requirement, the addition of a new feature or functionality, and new update in operating systems.
Any testing process must be based on three crucial factors:
- Current problems and processes
- Hand on test devices
- One Central testing repository
These three factors set the testing priorities in any area that you might think can create a problem for the users or the business. The QA team must be ready with business requirement documentation and latest testing tools to achieve the testing objectives.
To begin with, the team must identify the current problems and processes. To do that, you need to ask the following crucial questions for each of the factors.
1. Questions Must be Asked by the QA Team When Dealing with Current Problems and Process.
- What is the current production problem we have?
- What are the critical components that must work?
- What problems are complex and difficult to find?
- What areas of testing is consuming most of the time?
These are the basic parameters that your mobile application must meet. For the same, provide your mobile app testing team with all the information about the business requirement of the customers and the existing problems faced by the developers.
Effective communication among mobile app developers and QA team members is essential to set the priorities right.
2. Questions Must be Asked by the QA Team when Selecting the Test Devices
- What devices are we going to use for testing?
- What about the configurations?
- How can we track the devices?
There are many testing tools that are widely used by mobile application development companies. Some of the popular tools are Appium, Adobe Edge Inspect, Test Studio, Sikuli, and SeeTest.
You will find different features for testing Android apps and iPhone applications in each mobile app testing tool. While selecting the testing tool, you must consider the following factors:
- Supported Platforms: Select a tool that supports your targeted mobile operating system and their different versions. Avoid tools that support only one platform.
- Build Security: Security of your build is important, so always go for the tool that has features to share your build with only chosen testers and send them notifications about each update.
- Application Refactoring Requirements: It is better if you rely on manual testing before and after refactoring the application. Make sure the tool you choose allow you to do this.
- Result and Error Logging: Select a tool that helps you to mine log messages according to your priority, such as type, text, and time.
- Ability to Integrate 3rd Party Tools: Your testing tool may be highly efficient, but it should support 3rd party bug-tracking system to empower you more. A good mobile app testing tool will enable you to export the issues onto your preferred bug-tracking system.
3. Setting Up Central Testing Repository
Creating a central testing repository will help you create a one-stop destination for all your testing resources. In this repository, you can store critical information related to testing such as Test Accounts, Test URLs, databases and SharePoint access details, and more.
The repository will help new testers to learn about the testing parameters followed in your organization. Besides, it can also help in cross-platform testing.
Create a Winning Mobile App Testing Strategy
Once you have all the information and tools you need to create a winning mobile app testing strategy that could help you find and destroy bugs.
Here are 3 essential factors that you need to keep in mind while creating a winning mobile app testing strategy.
1. Device Selection
Testing on real devices always give the best results, however, with so many versions available, it is not always possible to perform the testing on every available device.
To overcome this, you can find what are the popular versions of mobile phones your targeted audience are using. Besides, you can choose devices of different operating systems of different screen resolutions.
2. The balance between Emulator and Simulator
Testing in an appropriate environment is important to create the same level of experience as users.
The best practice for any mobile application development company would be to properly perform testing on both Emulator-desktop app that mimics both hardware and OS of the application that needs to be tested and Simulator-that just mimic the basic behaviour of the application.
3. Pick Both: Manual and Automated Testing
Software test automation is a rising industry, but this does not mean an end to manual testing. The manual testing will always be the handiest way of testing a mobile, although, with the new technologies coming in the market, the assistance of tools, scripts, and software has become integral to mobile app testing.
Automation Testing tools come with a lot of features such as the ability to plan, track, and manage test cases, perform continuous testing, and organize, run, and report on test cases.
4. Analyze and Plan the Testing Stages Carefully
There are many stages of mobile app testing, and you need to carefully plan out the elements of testing at each stage.
Mobile app testing stages are:
At each, there are different test results that have to be achieved. For example, performance testing is done to check the performance of the mobile app under expected and unexpected workload, such as bad network connections, low battery, and simultaneous access to the application server. The QA team has to ensure that the required criteria has been met at each stage.
Since every mobile application is unique, for creating a winning mobile app testing strategy, you must consider testing from various users’ perspectives. Like said before, the software will always have some kind of bug; all you have to is to catch and destroy it before your users find out.
Siya Carla is the Solution Consultant at Finoit Technologies, a leading custom software development company which provides unique web design and mobile app development services. By creating interactive mobile apps for 450+ customers across the globe, Finoit enjoys a great reputation as a prominent mobile app development company.