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    Mobile App testing - complete guideline

    When I started my career as an intern in back 2014, I joined as a Quality assurance engineer in the Android team. We were testing a mobile app and it looked so easy but eventually, as I grew up as QA I found it was not that straightforward. In the last few years, mobile technology is in trend, people are using mobiles more than desktops, and mobile apps are crucial for all companies. So now a day mobile is called smartphones and they are just not meant for calls. It does almost everything bank transfer, shopping, chatting, photography, editing, cab books, food orders, and whatnot! So testing these mobile apps are crucial. 

    mobile app testing


    First of all, We need to know the different types of mobile apps, and based on that we need to identify testing and create test plans.

    I have created a detailed Youtube video on the mobile testing guideline. Also please subscribe to the channel for more informative videos.



    Types of Mobile Apps - 

    • Native app - Apps are created for specific platforms like Android, iOS for smaller devices
    • Web App - Apps that are designed for small-screen browsers. It is like a website but opens in a mobile browser.
    • Hybrid App - A combination of Native and Web apps, it is built using web technologies to run on a particular platform. 
    Depending on the Mobile App type, testing varies for example Native apps needs to be tested with all OS versions and supported platforms whereas web apps should be tested with all mobile browsers supported. There are some common test cases as well. 

    Difference between web application testing and Native app testing 

    • We have already posted about web application testing - tips and tricks. So most websites are tested on browsers while mobile apps need to be tested on mobile phones, as they have their own installer. 
    • Most web apps depend on the browser type and version while mobile apps must be tested on different Operating systems and versions of mobile.
    • Mobile apps also depend on the manufacturer of devices and their flavors added on OS for web apps no such dependency. 
    • For mobile apps, local data gets stored on the device itself, for web apps, only cache/session data gets saved based on the browser's settings.

    Types of Mobile App Testing

    To test all aspects of mobile applications, the following types of testing are required. 

    1. Usability Testing - Most crucial thing for small-screen users is how easy and self-explanatory to use the app. 
    2. Functional Testing - Of course functionality of the app is need to be tested 
    3. Installation testing - App must be correctly installed in all types of supported devices and Operating systems
    4. Compatibility testing - The App should be compatible with different device manufacturers, device types, Operating systems,s and screen sizes 
    5.  User Interface testing - Testing the UI of the app, working with different UI components like buttons, drop downs, and text boxes. Need to test on different screen sizes and resolutions. 
    6. API testing - Most of the application uses APIs to send and receive data or do particular functionality. So all the APIs should be tested and automated. 
    7. Negative or Operational testing - Similar to desktop testing, we need negative testing here as well but few more scenarios to cover like if the battery goes off if the internet goes off, the user by mistake exists from the app, etc 
    8. Performance testing 
    9. Security testing 

    Why Mobile App testing is complex?

    Testing on mobile devices is a bit more complex than what we test on desktop as - 
    • Every day we get a new mobile device
    • Different types of devices like - mobile, tablet, foldable, etc
    • Different OS systems like iOS, Android, blackberry, windows 
    • Different Flavours added by manufacturers like Samsung have their UX, One plus has Oxygen, etc 
    • Keeps on getting OS and Patch updates  
    • Large OS ranges to support like ios 6.x, 7.x Android 4.4 to Android 13 (mostly).
    • Devices keep on moving so changes in the network, connectivity, location, etc
    • Easy to flip devices horizontally and vertically 
    • A small battery, Less memory, and different processors

    Mobile App Automation Strategy - 

    • Automating functionalities - Automate the functionalities which are most used and easy to automate. For this fix few types of devices if you are automating UI. you can use tools like appium for this. 
    • Automate APIs - As part of integration testing all APIs used should be automated, in case of any failure on the server side should be reported immediately.
    • Automate installation and upgrade testing. Download the local build from the server and upgrade the existing build and run automation on it. 

    Tips and Tricks to test mobile apps - 

    • Using Emulators - To cover different screen sizes and device types you can use emulators. As per my personal experience for UI testing purposes. Functionality should be tested on real devices. 
    •  Using Vysor - This tool allows you to visualize your device screen on a desktop. Here is the detailed article.
    • Using device labs - There are few companies that give actual devices on rent for testing purposes. Samsung lab gives it for free (not sure now though). Users can log in and connect to these devices remotely using the browser and based on the rent contract they can use it for a particular time. This saves the cost of owning all different kinds of devices.

    If you have any doubts or suggestions feel free to reach out on social media. Follow Us on RedditFacebook, and Twitter
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