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Is Selenium Still A Favourite Among Qa Testers?

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By Author: Oliver Moore
Total Articles: 8
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As Agile and DevOps methodologies lead the way for enterprises to churn out quality software applications in double-quick time, test automation turns out to be an enabler of sorts. In fact, it has become a means to address challenges attributable to manual testing. However, in doing so, the development and QA teams utilize test automation tools that can be either open-source or licensed. These tools help enterprises to deliver software applications that have higher accuracy and require shorter turnaround time.

With open-source platforms leading the way in the implementation of Agile and DevOps methodologies, let us find out if Selenium, which was the king of automation tools, continues to retain its numero-uno position among the automation tools. In fact, it has been observed that developers and testers are increasingly leveraging the Selenium test automation procedure to meet their objectives. The tool offers benefits such as cost-effectiveness, speed, compatibility, and ease of integration, among others. However, today, when the test automation market has seen the presence of new tools, how does Selenium compete now? Where does it stand today is the moot question?

What is Selenium?

Developed by Jason Huggins, Selenium is an open-source test automation tool mainly created to test the Agile and DevOps workflows and web browsers. It comprises a suite of tools catering to the various needs of enterprises. The four such tools are Selenium RC, Selenium Integrated Development Environment (IDE), Selenium Grid, and Selenium WebDriver. At present, Selenium Grid and WebDriver have been merged into one.

• Selenium IDE: Helps to record, playback, debug, and edit test scripts during Selenium automated testing.

• Selenium Grid: Facilitates the distribution of tests across browsers and devices, thereby minimizing the test execution period.

• Selenium Remote Control: Used to run tests on different browsers and systems.

• Selenium WebDriver: The latest version of Selenium possesses a number of Selenium APIs.

Is Selenium still the king?

In the world of software testing where companies are looking at implementing test automation at cost-effective rates, the open-source platform of Selenium backed by a community of developers offers the required benefits. In fact, Selenium test automation is implemented by top companies belonging to domains such as IT, healthcare, financial services, education, computer hardware, and others. The tool, especially Selenium 2 or Selenium WebDriver, covers a global market share of 30.84% leaving behind competitors such as Unified Functional Testing, Apache JMeter, Quality Centre, and others.

If we consider Selenium, the test automation tool per se, it enjoys a dominant market share of 27.4%, which is by far the highest among other solutions in the field. So, when leading companies such as Google and Facebook use Selenium, does it really require validation? Its ease in generating test scripts, validation of functionality, and the reusability of the test scripts in automated testing frameworks make it highly popular among the community of testers.

Why is Selenium automation testing popular?

The features of Selenium make the tool deliver quality assured test outcomes. The reasons why enterprises are adopting the Selenium test automation framework in increasing numbers are as follows:

• Support for language and framework: The tool supports major languages such as Java, JavaScript, Python, C#, Perl, and Ruby to write test scripts. The QA specialists can write test automation scripts in any of the programming languages and the tool converts them into Selenium compatible codes. Moreover, the tool offers support for various frameworks like PHPUnit, TestNg, and JUnit, etc., to facilitate the writing of test scripts.

• Browser compatibility: Selenium offers cross-browser support for Chrome, IE, Firefox, Safari, and others. This helps QA specialists to test whether the codes can run across the above-mentioned browsers seamlessly.

• Easy to handle: Selenium has an easy to understand UI that lets testers to type words into specified boxes or click buttons while executing Selenium automation testing. Also, the testers do not need to be well-versed with any specific programming language to use the tool.

• Community support: Even though Selenium is an open-source tool, it has a large community base that works towards updating or upgrading the tool constantly. Thus, Selenium can be a highly resourceful tool.

• OS compatibility: Selenium is highly portable and supports different operating systems such as Linux, Windows, Mac OS, and others. The testers can write Selenium test automation scripts on any OS platform and execute them on others.

• Easy integrations and reusability: Selenium automated testing scripts can be reused and tested on multiple browsers and operating systems. However, it requires integration with add-ons and third-party frameworks to broaden the test coverage area. For example, testers need to integrate it with JUnit and TestNG to generate reports, with LambdaTest to conduct cloud grid testing, and with Sikuli to perform image-based testing.

• Almost free: Today when businesses are looking to cut costs to stay competitive, Selenium comes across as a cost-effective test automation platform. It can be downloaded free of cost and applied to test codes that are written in any programming language across multiple browsers and OS platforms.

Conclusion

Even though Selenium may have its can of woes, such as not supporting data-driven tests with manual scripts, among others, its benefits far outweigh the limited shortcomings. With customer experience becoming the sole differentiator for the success of any software application, developers and testers have their task cut out. They need to employ the open-source Selenium test automation tool to achieve business objectives, thereby conferring Selenium as the ‘king of test automation tools.


Author Bio:

Oliver has been associated with Cigniti Technologies Ltd as an Associate Manager - Content Marketing, with over 10 years of industry experience as a Content Writer in Software Testing & Quality Assurance industry. Cigniti is a Global Leader in Independent Quality Engineering & Software Testing Services with CMMI-SVC v1.3, Maturity Level 5.

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