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How to build an effective Mobile Testing Strategy

By Smuruthi Kesavan, Community Contributor -

The mobile testing strategy is an important part of your QA process. Mobile testing helps resolve bugs before your applications reach users. This can help you provide the same quality, features, and user experience to all your mobile users. Mobile testing maximizes your performance, quality of your mobile application, performance, and testing core features. It also helps reduce cost because changes made later can be costlier. 

How to build an effective Mobile Testing Strategy

Mobile device testing can be a cumbersome process and present some unique challenges along the way. There are different mobile phone models being launched in the market now. They come with advanced upgrades, and next-level features to enhance user experience. On top of that, there’s also a lot to keep yourself updated on like – OS updates, dos and dont’s, features, and application infrastructure. 

A lot of decisions should be made with the mobile testing framework and you need a plethora of new-age and resilient DevOps tools to ensure that your apps and webpages perform well. This guide details the information that you need to build an effective and winning mobile testing strategy. With the right approach, you can create the right mobile testing approach and reduce TATs. 

What to Choose – Emulators or Real Devices?

Testing your web applications on different mobile devices can be overwhelming and frustrating. You need to test across different versions and devices which can be quite a daunting task. Mobile testing on real devices can be costly as one must have an in-house device farm with all the legacy and new model mobile phones. This comes with a high setup and maintenance cost.

People usually choose emulators and simulators as an alternative to this. Emulators can mimic the functionality of real devices and initiate actions. Even though emulators functions similar to a real device – it doesn’t emulate the hardware.

Emulators are great for early-stage testings and they help you optimize your testing and design initiatives in the beginning. But as you go along, running all your tests on emulators can fail in real-world scenarios. For example, if there is a battery issue specific to iPhone X, you might not be able to find it out using an emulator. 

This is where real device cloud comes in. Real device cloud are real devices hosted on a server available for you to test your applications. Using real devices will help you test out various real-world scenarios like 

  • Bandwidth 
  • Device capabilities
  • Battery consumption
  • GPS
  • Network issues 
  • Call and SMS notifications
  • Camera functionality, and more 

BrowserStack allows you to test your web and mobile applications on 3000+ devices, browser versions, and operating systems. You can seamlessly access the device that you want in just a few clicks and get started with your testing process.

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Once you have decided how you want to test your applications, you need to have a strategy. Listed below are a few steps that will help you test and release quality applications.

Selecting the Right Mobile Devices

Identifying the right devices is the first step in developing an efficient strategy. The best way forward in this scenario is to shortlist the top devices used by your target demographic. This way you’ll be able to cover at least 70-80% of your test devices and it can be extended to other devices as well.

Automated Mobile Testing 

Automation is very important when performing mobile testing. Automating the testing process of your apps increases your speed in identifying bugs. You can run parallel tests to identify bugs in different browsers. This helps you speed up your results, improve accuracy, and efficiency, and reduces your time to market. Additionally, it enables you to debug and fix bugs instantly.

BrowserStack allows you to seamlessly test your web and mobile applications on 3000+ mobile devices. You can run Selenium, Cypress, Playwright,  Puppeteer, Appium, Espresso, and XCUI tests seamlessly on any device and browser in a matter of just a few minutes.

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Mobile Performance and Load Testing Strategy

Testing your web applications after development for performance is essential. Likewise, it is also necessary to see how these apps perform when accessed from a mobile browser. To enable this in your testing strategy you can use cloud based testing to simulate real user conditions and behavior.

Your web app performance testing will help you track response time, latency, and predict numerous scenarios and use cases. With performance and load testing, you need to ensure that your web application runs smoothly post-release on all mobile browsers and devices. 

Functionality Testing

In functionality testing testers need to evaluate whether the main functions are operating and performing optimally. For instance, if you develop an E-commerce application, you need to test key features like login, registration, payment gateway integration, clickability of CTAs, cart additions, etc., 

Benefits of Functional Testing in Mobile Browser Testing: 

  1. Functional testing helps improve your user experience and rule out any critical issues. 
  2. Eliminate negative user feedback and ensures that all the requirements are met.
  3. Creates a positive digital brand experience. 
  4. It helps validate the core functions

UI and UX Optimization

Building a strong design strategy is a must as it directly impacts how users behave. This is important in your mobile testing strategy as elements need to be resized to scale down according to device requirements. Every element should be usable and consume lesser bandwidth such that the load times are lesser. Additionally, the elements should be in line with the latest software update of the device. 

UI should be easy and enable easy navigation through the app for all users. The design should be clean with only loadable elements. This enables users to quickly navigate and explore. 

Localization Testing 

Sometimes, language optimizations are needed to scale to different geographies. Check-out pages need to be optimized for currencies. Additionally, your brand’s message should be conveyed differently across geographies adhering to laws in the local regions. Therefore localization testing is more important now than ever.

Based on your target audience, you can also test for location-based parameters. These include language, maps, and other location-based metrics that will help you optimize your user experience. For instance, if you’re an e-commerce company shipping worldwide, you need to customize your elements like currency, time, language, etc., based on where your user is accessing your application. 

You can also account for load times in these areas helping you optimize your end-user experience. It helps in your brand’s discoverability and usability. BrowserStack’s Geolocation Testing enables you to test different geo parameters. This helps you to test different location-based scenarios and provides a more personalized experience for the user and increased conversions for your brand. 

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Different components like the ones discussed above help you to build an efficient process around mobile testing. Learning how to test and optimize will save you time and will help you build a seamless process. This way TATs and costs are reduced for your organization without compromising on the user experience.

An effective mobile testing strategy is built over time. By knowing how to test for mobiles and the tools to use, you can now release updates/features with confidence that your users will not be stuck with delays or bugs hampering their experience. 

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