A successful app is thought of as an exemplification of seamless performance and extraordinary functionality, but one tends to overlook the centrality of Testing in an app’s success. A right testing strategy makes all the difference. What separates a successful app from one that utterly fails is right mobile app testing approach.
Tom Taulli, Forbes contributor, nails the point as he says “ its not just about having cool application: users are more likely to abandon a program if it has functionality issues, no matter how promising it looks.” Also Jay Srinivasan, an application development expert, says “About half of the poor reviews on app stores are based on issues like crashes, network performance and battery drain.”
Testing is the answer to all such issues. Be it functionality, performance, network, security, compatibility or installation: testing fixes all before the app hits the market. But a right approach is what is worth. A successful mobile app testing strategy is one that makes sure that quality and performance guidelines are met. Lets trace the outline of a successful mobile application testing strategy.
Before beginning to test a mobile application one needs to define the target devices. Analyzing the market to choose the most used device can also be an alternative.
During the initial stages of development it is advisable to use emulators for quick and efficient checking of the app. They can be used for testing the basic functionality. Once the basic functionality is tested, one needs to understand the application’s behavior like user experience and touch response for which one can use physical devices. It is important to make sure that the test tools used support testing with both emulators and devices.
If the application supports different device forms while testing, the probability of application’s success is specified. Device model selection for testing will depend upon OS Version, Display Density and Form factor. The apps launched may be used on platforms that may not be using an updated OS versions, in that case the application should be tested on all major OS versions of the targeted base. Also different forms may respond differently to the application, like smartphones and tablets may offer different user experience. Display density, i.e. the screen size and screen resolution of a device, is another factor for consideration. The display density can affect the application’s experience to a great extent. One can also select device models that include a mix of different display densities to ensure undisturbed app experience.
Applications rely on network for functionality. While testing the environment used may be an easy and cost effective Wi-Fi network, but the cellular connectivity in real environment may not have such an access. Certain network simulation tools prove to be cost effective and simple enough to emulate the cellular networks while testing.
Automated testing is considered most useful in environments that have frequent integration of code. It is not much of testing but more of checking as it makes sure to reveal the software bugs that are generated after the functional and non-functional area undergoes enhancements. Automation makes sure that when the new changes are made the old features don’t show unwanted changes. It offers a mechanism to persistently repeat the test and also verify the results.
On the other hand Manual testing is a process using which the developers can manually test the app to find real user issues. It manually compares the program expectations and actual outcomes to detect application defects. Manual testing is like experiencing what the end user would do, and then finding the areas where the app behaves erratically.
In order to cover scenarios like speed of the application, battery usage, memory requirement and data requirement, one needs special test cases. Although functionality test cases are already managed, these scenarios needs to be treated with equal priority too. Keeping track of battery consumption while running an application is important and so is the response time of the app with different devices on different network type.
Designing a test strategy which includes right mobile emulator, device and testing tool makes sure that the testing covers all the major areas like usability, performance, functionality, security and compatibility. It may not be the most enjoyable part of mobile app development but definitely a necessary stumbling block. Right testing strategy increases the probability of success of the application.