Manual Testing Strategies To Ensure Bug Free Deployment Of A Mobile Application
Manual Testing • Mobile Testing •
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The job of a quality analyst is not at all easy. They are often disliked by developers since no one likes someone telling them that their code has a bug. But the job of a QA is quite interesting and very important in the software development life cycle. Especially, in the current age of digital transformation, with the number of smartphone users increasing daily and organizations moving more towards creating mobile applications, a QA plays a very important role. The behavior of an app may change either by functionality or by user experience depending on the device or browser used by the end-user. Let’s discuss the manual testing strategies needed to ensure successful defect-free deployment of a mobile application.
Select Device Type
An important job before starting the testing phase is to figure out the number of devices on which testing is to be performed. In the case of iOS, a number of devices are limited. But in the case of Android, there is no restriction on the platform or device on which it can be installed. As a result, hundreds of Android devices are there, each with their customized UI and screen resolutions. It will be better too.
- Research the market using analytic tools and figure out the devices that are used mostly by end users for the type of application you have developed.
- If the budget estimation of the project is sufficient, get a couple of Android and iOS devices for your mobile testing team.
- Functionality testing being covered in real mobile devices, for UI testing, the browser’s default emulator or mobile device emulator plug-ins will be sufficient.
Device or Emulator – What to Choose
After doing market analysis and figuring out the devices on which testing should be performed, you have to take the next big decision. Whether to test on emulators or real devices. Let’s discuss the advantage and disadvantage of both.
Real devices are:
- Testing can be performed on the same devices and the same operating system that will be used by an end user.
- Application performance under interruptions like voice call or text can also be checked.
However, there are also disadvantages like
- Purchase and maintenance cost.
- Availability of devices that are used only in certain countries.
Emulators on the other hand are
- Available easily, most of them being open source and free.
- Expected behaviors can be easily found.
- In the development phase, they can be connected with IDE.
- Both software and hardware functionalities can be replicated.
There are some cons as well
- Real time scenarios like device heating or battery drainage cannot be emulated.
- Slower than actual device.
- All OS versions are not supported.
For special testing requirements, in house solutions are the best. However, in the recent age of digital transformation, the Cloud provides us with multiple alternatives for testing.
- The problem with acquiring different devices and maintenance cost can be saved by testing on a cloud platform.
- The device pool can be accessed from multiple locations.
- The biggest advantage is continuity. Every time the developer modifies and adds a code, it can be redeployed and test case scenarios can be executed.
- The quality of the application is ensured by increasing test coverage.
- Supports parallel test case execution by running the same scenarios in multiple devices at the same time.
Before deploying the application live in production, it is important to test how the application performs at a place with the poor network coverage. However, it is difficult and time-consuming to test the application at real devices under different network connections since connectivity may vary according to place and network operators. Cloud testing provides another solution here by providing the option to emulate different connectivity range.
User Experience and Browser Compatibility
UX testing should preferably be performed on actual devices. The tester should manually check.
- Response of the application components like buttons, dropdowns, etc. on touch.
- User interaction specific behaviors like animations, page changes and their response time.
- Responsive behavior of the viewport in different devices, each with different resolutions.
- If the application is web based, its behavior and performance of critical functionalities should be tested in the browsers with major usage share in Android or iOS devices.
Performance and Security Testing
Mobile devices have limited storage space. Applications often tend to get slow or unresponsive when the storage space of the mobile becomes almost full. The application should be tested manually to check how it performs at a device with little storage space. Also, if it generates files like images or reports, testing should be done considering how it works with increasing user count.
If the app is dealing with sensitive data like banking or online transaction-related information, out-of-the-box security testing ideas are required. Especially, it should be ensured that the app does not store information in the device. An easy way to test it is by:
- Opening the application and logging in.
- Close or click back in the browser.
- Opening it again and check whether the user is still logged in.
Manual testing of a mobile application is not glamorous. It is but, quite a challenging job and sometimes, requires the tester to think of an idea that has not been implemented before. Mobile users are usually unforgiving and if they see an application performing not as expected, they will uninstall it without thinking twice. Hence, having a robust manual testing strategy is the key to an application’s success.
Written by Arnab Roy Chowdhury
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