In continuation with our earlier blog post, Key Challenges of Mobile App Testing, you will, here, understand how to overcome these challenges.
With businesses going mobile across industries, mobile app testing is becoming an integral part of enterprise testing strategy. To overcome the challenges involved in mobile app testing, one needs to adopt a pragmatic testing approach, focusing on functionality, performance, usability and security.
- Devices, platforms, versions – too much testing v/s too less testing: Testing for each and every existing device is simply not possible. The golden rule, here, is to go for the most commonly used devices and use simulators for the rest. Analyze client’s device level requirement and get the latest version of devices that meet client’s requirements. Create an optimal mix of real devices and emulators, depending on the amount of hardware integration needed. Make use of emulators, early in the project lifecycle, and real devices, at a later point, to ensure the app is working as expected. Virtualization using third-party tools offered by Perfecto, DeviceAnywhere can provide cost-effective ways to access the hardware required for testing. If the mobile testing needs are huge, then you can create mobile test labs, such as SauceLabs, MobileLabs, Xamarin Test Cloud
- Automation- when, where, and how? Automation is not required in the initial stages. As the application gets more stable and 60-65% of its features are built, automation becomes necessary as manual testing can only cover limited number of devices. The smoke test suite that includes the mandatory scenarios to be tested for any platform, should be automated as much as possible. For regressions and sanity tests, automation is preferred over manual testing as it lets you execute the same tests, repeatedly, for multiple user interactions. There are many open source products that provide an automation framework that you can customize to your business needs to cover the end-to-end development experience. Selecting a commercial solution for test automation with no vendor lock-in could be beneficial.
- Test it, like end users use it: Testers should capture the real-time scenarios and situations, keeping in mind the end users. There are various web-service tools available to test the performance of the app. Developing several distinct network emulators can help you test for various real-life scenarios such as different networks like 2G, 3G, WI-FI, multiple time zones, several languages etc. Public cloud can allow multiple and parallel testing of apps on devices connected to live networks. Involving end-users in the beta testing or UAT phase can help you improve the market readiness of the app.
- Securing the data: Identify the potential weak spots in your mobile apps with respect to the data flow, data storage and data leakage. Performing regular data audits and incorporating strong encryption techniques result in zero vulnerability. There are various tools like WebInspect that let you identify vulnerabilities associated with your app. Some of the fundamental areas to focus in security testing include testing information like authentication token, password, credit card details saved in the encrypted form, checking the data integrity, testing if the session handling is proper for time outs/user idle cases, performing penetration testing, and regular security scanning.
No matter how great your mobile application is, even one bug is enough to damage your business. There are thousands of mobile devices, hundreds of cell phone networks and multiple operating systems with different versions, resulting in millions of combinations that need to be covered to test a mobile app and this is just the tip of the iceberg. With today’s digitally empowered customer becoming more and more demanding, businesses are keeping no stone unturned in creating mobile apps that is able to delight its users, consistently.
Faced any unique challenges while testing a mobile app? Share your experiences here!
Sr. Consultant – Marketing, RapidValue