Mobile phones are no longer just meant for communication, they have become a multi-purpose personal gadget with ever increasing appetite for mobile apps. Intense competition in the mobile industry has reduced the time to market forcing companies to roll out new products and apps ahead of their competitors. But variations in OS, platform and network have made it increasingly challenging for testers to comprehensively perform mobile testing.
Mobile test automation provides an effective solution to the need to win over customers with additional features and the necessity to test those features quickly and more effectively. Mobile test automation tools increase test coverage and test effectiveness and shrink the time-to-market. They are of absolute necessity in creating complex apps in limited time. Before going ahead with mobile test automation, there are certain points companies need to keep in mind to get desired results.
1. Type of Automation desired
Companies need to decide what type of automation tools they should purchase. Object based tools are useful when application GUI is not stable but requires the backend to be stable. Image based tools provide platform independent test framework but require GUI to be stable. Cloud based tools provide advantage of anywhere, anytime testing on real devices. Companies can choose what best fits their need or even go for a customized, hybrid framework. To understand Mobile Test Automation – Right Tools and Right Approach, please download Gallop whitepaper on the subject here.
2. Cost & Expected ROI
Test automation is costly and becomes feasible only if properly executed. Acquisition & implementation of mobile automation requires careful planning. Companies need to determine ahead what they want to automate and perform a cost-benefit analysis to assess the ROI at various checkpoints.
3. Adaptability of the Tools
The mobile automation tool selected should work well with the currently existing test practices, frameworks and tools. It should be able to function across platforms, browsers and devices. These ensure that purchasing the tool does not require a complete overhaul of the existing infrastructure. The tool should be futuristic and adapt to new OS versions and future platforms. Running a Proof of Concept (PoC) helps to assess the adaptability of the tool before making the purchase.
4. Comprehensive Testing
The mobile automation tool selected should work well with both simulators and actual devices. Simulators are useful in early stages of development to test basic application functionality. Testing in the later stages needs to be done on actual devices to check touch response and user experience.
5. Test Integrity
The tool should allow testing of all features without jail breaking or rooting the device which can lead to issues with stability and performance and even compromise security. It should produce an easy test workflow with adequate script re-usability to test across platforms.
Report generation features and a good support network are other good-to-have features.
By 2016, premium smartphones will account for one in three phones sold globally, covering 40% of revenue. Speedy and robust mobile testing can help your company claim your share of the market.
What are your experiences with Mobile Test Automation? Would love to know what you consider a decisive factor before attempting Mobile Test Automation.