You’ve developed a mobile app. Now what?
Over the last decade, mobile devices have become an essential form of communication.
Numerous possibilities and the convenience of mobile devices have led to unstoppable growth in the development of a mobile application. Thus, the mobile application market has become one of the fastest-growing industries.
All this has led to an increase in the importance of testing mobile applications. Today it is crucial to have an app that works flawlessly and is better than competitors’ apps. This can be achieved by continually testing the application.
From banking, modern cars, entertainment games to smart refrigerators, people interact with software daily. We believe you at least once experienced the frustrating situation where the app you use didn’t work when you needed it most.
Slow-loading websites, errors when paying by card, some application options that do not work; these are most of the software problems we encounter almost every day.
To avoid low-quality solutions and constant errors in the operation of various applications, developers have begun to look for new approaches that will allow their software solution to work as intended.
The answer to that (but also to many other problems) is the notion of software testing solutions. In the last few years, this new way has become the standard not only in digital agencies but also in all companies that develop software solutions.
What is unique about mobile application testing?
Testing is of great importance to product quality.
In a market of 4 million mobile apps, users have a bevy of options to choose from. In a sea of supply and demand, it is essential to ensure that your mobile app’s quality, usability and security not only meet expectations but exceed them.
Mobile app testing is essential to make sure the application is running without errors. Application testing must be performed during app development to discover and reduce the possibility of errors in the completed application.
An application is of high quality if it meets the defined specifications. Specifications define how an application should behave and work.
Application testing requires knowledge of how different operating systems and applications work to conduct testing as efficiently as possible.
Errors can be ranked according to several criteria: critical, significant, lower, and cosmetic. They can occur in several situations:
- the app doesn’t do what the specifications say it should work
- the app does what the specifications say it shouldn’t work
- the application does something that is not specified in the specifications
- the application is not doing something that is not specified in the specifications, and it should be
- the app is slow, cluttered or confusing to use.
Behind every good mobile app is a series of software tests that have enabled smooth operation.
In this blog post, we bring you six key factors to consider before testing a mobile app to improve your ability to detect bugs, deliver a great product to market and maximize your return on investment.
How to effectively test mobile applications?
Before you start testing an application, you also need to consider the type of mobile app you plan to develop. It is essential to understand its business idea, functionality, and system architecture. It will help you identify the underlying shortcomings.
You also have to select the appropriate device to test the app on and analyze how it should work based on the following factors:
- On which devices will the application be used – smartphones or tablets?
- What are the popular devices among the target audience?
- Which earliest version of the OS will it support?
1. Test different configurations
Configuration testing is a form of software testing that checks an application with multiple software and hardware combinations to discover the optimal configurations that a system can operate without flaws and errors.
Your users are likely to install or run the application on different operating systems (such as iOS, Android) and web browsers. While running the tests, set the stages for the required configurations and use your test plan to determine which tests you want to run.
Two types of configuration testing occur on mobile devices: software or application testing and hardware configuration testing.
Software configuration test is done over the AUT (application under test) with multiple OS versions, software updates, etc.
Testing the software configuration requires a lot of time to install and uninstall the various software used for testing. Hardware testing includes testing internal processors, internal hardware, screen sizes, resolution, space or memory, camera, radio, WIFI, Bluetooth, etc.
Configuration testing is crucial because it discovers the system’s optimal configuration under which the application performs at its best.
2. Network connectivity
Although most applications have been tested for functionality and performance, users still complain and think that some apps are not good enough.
The network has a significant impact on app behavior and every mobile application behaves differently in different network environments. People access applications in different network conditions, which can affect the operation of the app.
Several factors make networks different: physical barriers, network range, the distance between devices, wireless network interference and signal exchange, network use and load, poorly deployed antennas, signal reflection and wireless signal limitation, transmitter power limitations, signal polarization, and much more.
When testing applications, the speed of the data networks should be taken into account.
The expansion of mobile networks, as well as WiFi hotspots, has made it possible to use mobile applications almost anywhere. That is why it is essential to test applications of different WiFi and cellular networks of different speeds.
Differences in network speed and data capabilities can affect page load times, which is critical when it comes to user retention.
Wireless networks are unpredictable, which significantly affects the functionality, performance and user experience of the application.
Before they are available to users, mobile apps must pass a wide range of tests on different networks and in different conditions.
3. Real devices vs. emulators
An important question to consider when planning a mobile app testing campaign is, “Is it better to test an app on real devices or emulators?”
Emulators can perform limited tests, while actual devices can be used to test every function, including functional camera tests, geolocation features, biometric scanners and more.
Testing applications with real devices makes it easy to assess usability and overall user experience. Your users or customers will use apps on real devices like smartphones or tablets, not emulators.
The right testing devices will allow you to run a more thorough and high-quality test for mobile apps.
Compared to emulators, real devices provide several testing advantages allowing a tester to assess apps better, especially when it comes to the performance of functions and UX.
Functional testing of the software ensures that the application and its features work well and meets specifications. Usability testing, known as user experience testing, checks the ease of use and intuitiveness of an app and its user-friend level.
4. Testing on multiple screen sizes
There are a lot of different things to consider when creating a mobile app. Before and after you have developed a mobile app, you need to keep in mind two often-overlooked factors: screen size and resolution.
Here it is essential to distinguish the size and resolution of the screen. Screen size is the length of the screen in inches, measured diagonally or from one corner to another corner of the screen. Resolution refers to the width and height of the screen.
Screen size is important because there are different devices with different screen sizes. Whether you opt for Apple or Android, both platforms have a multitude of different devices.
Screen resolution is crucial because it can affect how designers build their applications.
Understanding size and resolution can help you optimize your mobile app for a variety of devices. This also applies to smartphones, tablets, and even smart TVs or other screens where users can download your app.
5. Mobile app stability
Stability is usually associated with crashes and a sign of how reliable your application is. An application is considered stable if it behaves as it should. If the system crashes once, it doesn’t mean your app isn’t stable. The problem occurs if your app crashes often.
If you have already published your app, you may not always know that your users are experiencing excessive crashes with your app.
Solving crashes is not an easy task at all. However, if you can identify the root cause of the crash, you will most likely find a solution to it.
Many situations can cause a crash in your app. Some reasons are obvious, like checking for a null value or empty string, but others are subtler, like passing invalid arguments to an API or even complex multithreaded interactions.
You need to know about the crash before receiving negative reviews. Tracking your app’s crashes in real-time will help you address issues before they impact more of your users.
6. Manual vs. automated testing
Testing is an inevitable process if you want to build excellent and successful software. The software can be tested manually or automatically by using special testing tools.
Manual testing is the oldest version of testing. In manual testing, a person performs tests step by step, without test scripts. The problem with manual testing is that it requires a lot of time and human resources.
In automated testing, tests are performed through a test automation framework and other tools and software. Automation has many benefits for software testing.
It improves results and quality, increases reliability, reduces deviations in results, speeds up the process and can ultimately increase the overall quality of the software. One con of automation is that it is a more expensive process.
Although it has many benefits, automatic testing cannot completely replace manual testing. When it comes to accessibility and usability of the mobile app, manual testing is still the key factor.
When a tester manually creates and executes tests, he is more able to handle complex and nuanced test scenarios, which is one of the advantages of manual testing. The conclusion is that you need both – manual and automation testing.
Testing is the king
In the modern software development process, the introduction of a testing process is essential.
Due to the highly competitive market, it is crucial to maintain an excellent quality of any mobile application type. Just one error and difficulty in the application’s operation is enough for the user to delete it and never use it again.
There are several testing strategies and tools available to set your mobile app apart from others. A mix of different testing approaches will provide the best results.
As the mobile market continues to grow and customer experience dictates brand success, quality-emphasizing brands will enjoy increased market share, profitability, loyalty and customer satisfaction.
It is essential to create a user-friendly mobile application that will work flawlessly and provide a superior user experience.
At Async Labs, we provide high-level IT solutions to various clients worldwide and offer mobile application development and testing services.
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