A complete guide to testing mobile applications with in-depth Details

By Shoaib Khan   Posted on January-25-2023   140


Introduction To Mobile Application Testing

Gone are the days when the telephone used to be an appliance that sat in a corner and had to ring to get our attention or a computer was a machine only a few people used – they are now an extension of our being- a window to the world and virtual servants that do as they are told.

Computers were a rage and changed how we humans thought, behaved, learned, and existed.

Nowadays, Mobility solutions have taken over the market. People don’t want to switch ON their laptops/PC for everything, rather they want their handheld devices to perform everything quickly.

Hence the mobile solutions which we deliver to our clients should be tested very well. This tutorial is intended for those people who are already in mobile testing or those who have switched to it in recent times. As we already have many tutorials on definitions of mobile testing-related terminologies, we will be directly dealing with the scope of this tutorial.

Types of Mobile Testing:

There are broadly 2 kinds of testing that take place on mobile devices:

1). Hardware testing:

The device includes internal processors, internal hardware, screen sizes, resolution, space or memory, camera, radio, Bluetooth, WIFI, etc. This is sometimes referred to as, simple “Mobile Testing”.

2). Software or Application testing:

The applications that work on mobile devices and their functionality are tested. It is called “Mobile Application Testing” to differentiate it from the earlier method. Even in mobile applications, there are a few basic differences that are important to understanding:

a) Native apps: A native application is created for use on a platform like mobile and tablets.
b) Mobile web apps are server-side apps to access website/s on mobile using different browsers like Chrome, Firefox by connecting to a mobile network or wireless network like WIFI.
c) Hybrid apps are combinations of native apps and web apps. They run on devices or offline and are written using web technologies like HTML5 and CSS.

There are a few basic differences that set these apart:

  • Native apps have single-platform affinity while mobile web apps have a cross-platform affinity.
  • Native apps are written in platforms like SDKs while Mobile web apps are written with web technologies like HTML, CSS, asp.net, Java, and PHP.
  • For a native app, installation is required but for mobile web apps, no installation is required.
  • A native app can be updated from the play store or app store while mobile web apps are centralized updates.
  • Many native apps don’t require an Internet connection but for mobile web apps, it’s a must.
  • Native app works faster when compared to mobile web apps.

The rest of the article is going to be about Mobile Application Testing.

The significance of Mobile Application Testing

Testing applications on mobile devices is more challenging than testing web apps on the desktop due to

  • Different range of mobile devices with different screen sizes and hardware configurations like a hard keypad, virtual keypad (touch screen) and trackball, etc.
  • Wide varieties of mobile devices like HTC, Samsung, Apple, and Nokia.
  • Different mobile operating systems like Android, Symbian, Windows, Blackberry, and IOS.
  • Different versions of operation systems like iOS 5.x, iOS 6.x, BB5.x, BB6.x, etc.
  • Different mobile networks operators like GSM and CDMA.
  •  Frequent updates – (like Android- 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, iOS-5.x, 6.x) – with each update a new testing cycle is recommended to make sure no application functionality is impacted.

As with any application, Mobile application testing is also very important, as the clientele is usually in millions for a certain product – and a product with bugs is never appreciated. It often results in monetary losses, legal issues, and irreparable brand image damage.

Basic Difference Between Mobile and Desktop Application Testing:

Few obvious aspects that set mobile app testing apart from the desktop testing

  • On the desktop, the application is tested on a central processing unit. On a mobile device, the application is tested on handsets like Samsung, Nokia, Apple, and HTC.
  • Mobile device screen size is smaller than a desktop.
  • Mobile devices have less memory than a desktop.
  • Mobiles use network connections like 2G, 3G, 4G, or WIFI whereas desktop use broadband or dial-up connections.
  • The automation tool used for desktop application testing might not work on mobile applications.

Types of Mobile App Testing:

To address all the above technical aspects, the following types of testing are performed on Mobile applications.

  • Usability testing: To make sure that the mobile app is easy to use and provides a satisfactory user experience to the customers
  • Compatibility testing: Testing of the application in different mobile devices, browsers, screen sizes, and OS versions according to the requirements.
  • Interface testing: Testing of menu options, buttons, bookmarks, history, settings, and navigation flow of the application.
  • Services testing: Testing the services of the application online and offline.
  • Low-level resource testing: Testing of memory usage, auto-deletion of temporary files, and local database growing issues known as low-level resource testing.
  • Performance testing: Testing the performance of the application by changing the connection from 2G, 3G to WIFI, sharing the documents, battery consumption, etc.
  • Operational testing: Testing of backups and recovery plan if a battery goes down, or data is lost while upgrading the application from a store.
  • Installation tests: Validation of the application by installing /uninstalling it on the devices.
  • Security Testing: Testing an application to validate if the information system protects data or not.

Mobile Application Testing Strategy

The Test strategy should make sure that all the quality and performance guidelines are met. A few pointers in this area:

1) Selection of the devices: Analyze the market and choose the devices that are widely used. (This decision mostly relies on the clients. The client or the app builders consider the popularity factor of certain devices as well as the marketing needs for the application to decide what handsets to use for testing.)

2) Emulators: The use of these is extremely useful in the initial stages of development, as they allow quick and efficient checking of the app. The emulator is a system that runs software from one environment to another environment without changing the software itself. It duplicates the features and works on the real system.

Types of Mobile Emulators

  • Device Emulator- provided by device manufacturers
  • Browser Emulator- simulates mobile browser environments.
  • Operating systems Emulator- Apple provides emulators for iPhones, Microsoft for Windows phones, and Google Android phones

Digital Marketing Strategies

Gone are the days when the telephone used to be an appliance that sat in a corner and had to ring to get our attention or a computer was a machine only a few people used – they are now an extension of our being- a window to the world and virtual servants that do as they are told.

By Shoaib Khan    25-Jan-2023 Views  140

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