Mobile App Testing: Top 3 Focus Points

by Pramod KG

Every day countless number of mobile applications are releasing world wide across various distribution platforms like App Store, Google Play Store,Windows Store etc. To compete in the market each organization tries to build apps with better  quality and this shows the importance of mobile application testing.

Testing mobile application is complex and different from a web application. Unlike web apps, mobile apps need to be tested on a wide variety of platforms and versions in multiple devices in different network and connectivity conditions. Also, frequent OS updates, new devices launches make additional test cycles a necessity.

Key Difference between  Mobile App testing and Web Application Testing

  1. Screen Size – Unlike web application testing  mobile apps needs to adapt themselves to various layouts, screen size and configurations.
  2. Interactions – We know in case of web apps, interactions are mostly through mouse and keyboard but in case of mobile apps we need to take care of all the user gestures like tapping, swiping, long press etc.
  3. Target device – A web developer can build and test app on respective browsers, but for a mobile developer he needs to rely on simulator or emulator which is not an exact representation of a real device.
  4. Security – If a mobile app is given access to native apps such as photos, contacts etc., more care needs to be taken since this can lead to serious security issues such as hacking of user data. This can even lead to degradation of the application.
  5. Updates – Mobile apps are frequently updated since the OS and platform are also updating. So both tester and developer needs to have an eye on all issues that can occur during these updates.

In short, for effective testing of mobile apps we should keep our  focus on following:

  • Device Selection 

Testing can be done using device emulators, browser emulators and on real devices. But since we usually do not test the application in a wide range of devices, we can use a device cloud like Perfecto mobile,  or any other keynote device. It’s better to cover testing on low end, medium, and high end phones.

  • Mobile Automation

A lot of automation tools are available . This can be effective while doing regression testing. Moreover, it reduces cost, time and is accurate. Tools like Appium is open source and can be used for both Android and iOS automation.

  • Network Selection

We need to check the response of app in various connectivity conditions like Wi-Fi , 2G, 3G etc. Network stimulation tools can be used for the same.

Types of Testing

  • Usability testing – This is meant for user friendly behavior of app. We need to make sure that the screen appears same across multiple devices.
  • Functional testing – Includes end to end testing. All the requirements mentioned in SRS should be working.
  • Compatibility testing – Here, we test apps in different devices, operating systems, screen sizes etc.
  • Performance testing – We check how the application respond to adverse conditions like low battery, low memory, low network,  a large number of users accessing the app etc.
  • Interrupt testing – Testing the behavior of app while receiving a call, SMS, notifications etc.
  • Security testing – Checking app against vulnerabilities like authentication, authorization etc.

In conclusion, by selecting proper target devices and executing all mentioned testing types we can ensure that maximum test coverage is achieved and app can rank high in application downloads list.

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