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The What And Why Of Mobile Application Testing
The ubiquitous mobile phone has gone places. It is no longer the communication tool of yore but encompasses multitasking activities like paying utility bills, executing financial transactions, booking tickets, playing games, watching movies, and many more. In fact, the mobile of today or should we say the smartphone has become a wonder gadget that empowers individuals. Importantly, a mobile application is the underlying software architecture that has transformed mobile phones into the modern multipurpose gadgets.
Businesses over the world are leveraging the power, convenience, navigability, and reach of mobile applications to expand their markets and increase the sale of their products and services. This has taken the number of mobile applications to a humongous level and has made ‘quality’ the ultimate arbiter for the success or failure of an application. According to statista.com, the total number of mobile applications running on both iOS and Android platforms stand at a whopping 3.9 million in 2019. Since quality has become the ultimate criterion for any mobile application to succeed on the crucible of user adoption, businesses face challenges galore. These include making the application compatible across platforms, devices, frameworks, and networks. To ensure the same, mobile application testing happens to be the magic wand businesses should employ.
What is mobile application testing and why is it important?
It is a process wherein the functionality, usability, scalability, security, and many other attributes of a mobile application are tested. The testing ensures the application meets a certain standard before being delivered to the end customers. Since mobile applications also facilitate financial transactions, the added security dimension makes them extremely critical for testing. The testing can employ both manual or automatic means where, in the case of the latter, a suitable test tool is used.
Testing mobile applications has become important for it ensures the applications remain compatible across platforms, networks, and devices. It helps to identify and fix the inherent glitches that might enter the code during the development process. Should the applications not meet the expected standards of loading speed, functionality, navigability, security, and usability, they will be at risk of being rejected by the users. Moreover, in today’s time, customers choose to install mobile applications based on their ratings and reviews. Since these parameters are directly linked to the quality of mobile applications, mobile app testing becomes critical for any application to stay competitive.
What are the challenges in conducting mobile application QA testing?
Unlike testing web applications, mobile app testing faces a slew of challenges mostly based on the diversity of smart devices. For example, a mobile application is expected to function seamlessly across screen sizes, device build, hardware configuration, OS and browser versions, and so on. Let us delve into the multifarious challenges that mobile application QA testing entail -
• Faster delivery to the markets: The chances of any mobile application to hit the success button depends on how fast it is rolled out into the market. The pressure of delivering an application with new features to the market often lets businesses to skip certain aspects of testing. These may result in bugs or glitches going unnoticed.
• Multiple platforms and browsers: Any robust mobile application testing approach should consider testing the application across a slew of operating platforms and browsers like Android, iOS, Windows, Symbian, Blackberry and Chrome, IE, and Firefox, etc. To top it all, the above-mentioned operating systems and browsers go through periodic version updates. So, any
mobile application testing approach should ensure that the application functions seamlessly not only across operating platforms and browsers but their different variants as well.
• A multitude of devices: The mobile applications need to be tested across devices that may vary in terms of screen sizes, hardware configurations, memory, and others. This diversity can impact end-to-end testing with a need for the seamless integration of APIs. The quality of integration will ensure the data is easily accessed from the backend and shown on the frontend.
• Choosing the right automation tool: In view of the huge gamut of variables - devices, networks, operating systems, and browsers, implementing mobile test automation would require choosing the right automation tool.
The popularity of mobile applications has made businesses to deliver them in quick succession to remain competitive. However, the applications should be thoroughly tested for glitches and vulnerabilities, especially by experienced mobile testing services.
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