Last updated on November 27th, 2023 at 10:01 pm
In today’s saturated mobile app market, customers are presented with a multitude of choices, and mobile phones have evolved far beyond their original functions. However, it’s undeniable that mobile phones remain essential consumer products with a lasting presence in the market. As the number of applications continues to soar, the demand for various types of mobile app testing also grows.
Table of Contents
What is mobile testing?
Mobile testing is a software testing method that assesses the quality and functionality of mobile and desktop applications across diverse mobile devices, platforms, and networks. This comprehensive evaluation encompasses performance, usability, security, compatibility, and other crucial factors that collectively contribute to delivering an exceptional user experience.
Nonetheless, mobile testing presents distinctive challenges that may not always be present in conventional software testing. These challenges encompass:
- Diverse Array of Devices, Platforms, and Screen Dimensions in the market
- Disparities in Network Connectivity and Bandwidth
- Intricacies of Mobile Operating Systems
- Varied Environmental Conditions, encompassing factors like temperature, lighting, and noise levels.
Reputable Approaches to Mobile Testing
In the realm of mobile testing, two fundamental methodologies reign supreme: manual testing and automated testing. The proliferation of complex features and functionalities within modern mobile devices has rendered exclusive reliance on manual testing a formidable challenge. Manual testing entails Quality Assurance (QA) specialists manually executing end-to-end tests devoid of any automation tools, extensions, or scripts, a process that is frequently laborious and time-consuming.
This predicament underscores the significance of automated app testing. In automated mobile app testing, QA specialists harness mobile app testing tools, craft tailored scripts, execute these scripts, and collect relevant data. Automated mobile app testing predominantly finds its application in testing features that necessitate the management of a substantial test load concurrently, along with copious amounts of data.
However, the selection of tools available to developers in this methodology is typically limited, thereby motivating the adoption of a hybrid approach that combines both manual and automated mobile testing techniques.
Assessing Your Testbed
The establishment of an appropriate testing environment, commonly referred to as the testbed or test environment, assumes paramount importance in the realm of mobile application testing. The testbed is meticulously configured to align with the precise requirements of the Application Under Test (AUT). In several scenarios, the testbed encompasses a fusion of the test environment and test data. To discern the suitable testbed for mobile app testing, organizations can explore the following alternatives:
These provide a pragmatic solution for testing, offering time and labor savings along with cost-effectiveness.
In practice, it is imperative to conduct application testing across a spectrum of available devices. Organizations may formulate a strategic approach to shortlist specific devices based on their prevalence in the target market or the anticipated user demographic.
Distinguishing Types of Applications
Before delving into the strategies for mobile app testing, it is imperative to familiarize oneself with the various categories of applications that warrant rigorous testing:
- Native Applications: These applications are meticulously designed to cater exclusively to users of a specific mobile platform and are accessible through platforms like the Play Store or App Store. Native apps are constructed using objective-C/Swift for iOS or Java/Kotlin for Android. Cross-platform native apps often leverage languages such as Native Script, Flutter, or React Native.
- Responsive Web Applications: These applications are crafted to operate seamlessly on mobile browsers, embodying the characteristics of Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) or highly responsive site versions, replete with supplementary mobile-friendly features.
As we transition into a discussion on critical strategies for mobile app testing, it is imperative to distinguish between a test strategy and a test plan, two concepts that are frequently conflated.
Mobile Testing Strategy Template
- Provide an overview of the project and explain the purpose of the testing strategy.
- Define the specific objectives of the testing process and clarify the expected outcomes.
- Identify and prioritize the key functionalities to be subjected to testing.
- Determine the scope and extent of the testing efforts.
- Specify the target devices and operating systems for comprehensive testing.
- Define the testing environments, including the use of emulators, simulators, or real devices.
- Develop a detailed plan outlining the entire testing process, encompassing test cases, test data, and the approach to test automation.
- Create comprehensive test cases for each functionality, offering clear step-by-step instructions and specifying the expected outcomes.
- Clearly outline the prerequisites and specifications for establishing the testing environment.
- Identify the necessary tools and resources essential for effective testing, including a comprehensive list of devices and compatible operating systems, testing tools, and secure access to the application.
In today’s diverse landscape of devices and operating systems, users have the flexibility to choose how they access applications. Consequently, ensuring seamless performance across these platforms is imperative. Once the compatible OS versions have been determined, it becomes essential to identify the specific devices that require testing. Testers can optimize device testing by combining emulator-based testing with physical device testing, resulting in cost-effective testing procedures and exceptional test outcomes.
Harnessing the functionalities offered by a cloud-based AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform like LambdaTest enables the testing of applications on real devices worldwide. This platform seamlessly integrates into your CI/CD pipelines and provides support for both pre-release and post-release functional and performance testing.
- Employ automated testing tools to streamline and expedite the testing procedures.
- Seamlessly integrate automation tools with the overall development and testing workflows, considering the utilization of tools such as Appium, Selenium, or LambdaTest
- Thoroughly assess the application’s performance under various conditions, including scenarios involving low battery levels and varying network connectivity.
- Vigilantly monitor and evaluate key performance metrics such as response times, crash rates, and memory utilization.
- Leverage Mobile Application Performance Management (MAPM) tools for in-depth performance tracking and analysis.
Security concerns have emerged as a paramount issue for users in today’s digital landscape. With our devices assuming a central role in our daily routines, we routinely entrust them with a plethora of sensitive information, encompassing identity details, passwords, location history, and more. This wealth of data is susceptible to a variety of threats, rendering security testing an imperative exercise for validating an application’s resilience against potential malicious attacks.
The execution of effective security testing hinges upon the establishment of a robust and meticulously crafted strategy, which serves as the foundational framework for efficiently addressing security vulnerabilities. When formulating a security testing strategy, it is imperative to give due consideration to the following critical factors:
- Comprehensive Platform Understanding: A profound comprehension of the operating environment and platforms on which the application will operate is paramount. This entails identifying the potential vectors that malicious attackers might exploit on specific operating systems.
- Multifaceted Defensive Measures: The deployment of multiple layers of defense is indispensable. This encompassing approach integrates an array of mobile app testing tools, encompassing static, dynamic, and forensic analyses. These tools operate synergistically to uncover diverse avenues through which potential attackers could compromise the application’s security.
- Adversarial Perspective Testing: Adopting an adversarial perspective during testing is instrumental in gaining deeper insights into vulnerabilities and potential exploitable weaknesses. This approach entails simulating the mindset and tactics of an attacker, shedding light on the methods an adversary might employ to compromise the application’s security.
Network Connectivity Testing
While many users may enjoy high-speed office or home WiFi connections, a substantial portion of the population faces challenges with unreliable and slow internet connections. In such adverse scenarios, inconsistent network reception can result in significant latency and diminished performance when transitioning between varying network speeds.
In these circumstances, the QA team’s responsibility is to ensure a smooth and consistent user experience across a spectrum of network speeds and conditions. This includes testing performance under conditions ranging from 1G to LTE to WiFi, as well as accounting for abrupt transitions between different networks, speeds, and potential connection interruptions.
By meticulously addressing these factors within the framework of a security testing strategy, organizations can bolster their defenses and proactively safeguard sensitive user data from malicious threats. This proactive stance is pivotal in ensuring the robustness of an application’s security measures and, consequently, the protection of user information.
QA testers should conduct thorough battery testing procedures to pinpoint the specific app components responsible for the most substantial battery drain. Once identified, these components can be either eliminated or modified to optimize battery performance.
Application Size and Storage Testing:
Application size and storage requirements are critical considerations for both developers and users. Users often shy away from installing apps that consume excessive storage space on their devices. To address this concern, developers and testers must initially focus on optimizing the app’s size without compromising its functionality and offerings.
Furthermore, testers must ensure that the application’s size remains within acceptable limits, even with each subsequent update or release. Excessive growth in app size can deter users from continued usage, making size and storage testing an essential part of the quality assurance process.
Application Permission Testing for Privacy:
Maintaining user privacy is paramount for any business, and overwhelming users with excessive permission requests can have a detrimental impact. Testers play a crucial role in ensuring that the app only requests permissions necessary for its core functionality. They should also verify the removal of permission requests related to features that are no longer present in the app. Additionally, testers must thoroughly assess the proper combinations of permissions to safeguard user privacy.
Testing Application Upgrade Scenarios:
Application upgrade testing holds significant importance for mobile app testers. This process aims to prevent app crashes during upgrades, which can occur if the development team assigns an incorrect version number. Furthermore, retaining user data and preferences after upgrades is essential to providing a seamless user experience.
For instance, in food delivery, ride-sharing, digital wallet, and banking apps, users store valuable information such as card details, addresses, and contact information. Ensuring the preservation of this data with each upgrade is critical to minimizing user inconvenience.
- Establish a culture of continuous improvement by regularly reviewing and enhancing the testing processes.
- Consistently scrutinize test results and actively seek input and feedback from end-users.
- Continually refine and optimize the automation strategy and the mechanisms for performance monitoring.
Adhering to this mobile testing strategy template empowers organizations to construct a robust and efficient testing framework that adeptly tackles the distinctive challenges of mobile application testing. Such an approach is pivotal in forestalling errors, mitigating crashes, and enhancing usability, ultimately culminating in positive user experiences, elevated customer satisfaction, and augmented revenue generation.
In summary, it’s evident that an efficient mobile app testing procedure, coupled with a clearly defined strategy, is a pivotal factor in the success of exceptional apps. These strategies are adept at addressing a significant portion of the challenges that may surface throughout the app development journey. Consequently, they expedite the app’s time-to-market while upholding its peak functionality and quality standards.