Mobile application Testing methods

In this post, we will learn mobile application testing methods. We can test mobile applications using real devices or using simulators and emulators. The methods apply to both manual testing or mobile automation.

Testing on Real devices

Real device based mobile application testing allows you to use either Wi-Fi or USB connector to connect to and execute tests on the devices locally. We can leverage cloud providers as well to use real devices on the cloud in your tests.

Example cloud providers:
Sauce Labs
BrowserStack
Experitest

Select a mobile device by attributes like make, model, and OS version etc. In automation testing, we set the DesiredCapabilites object with these attributes of the target mobile device. Upload your mobile application to the device and start testing.

Advantages of Real devices

Test accuracy: Tests performed on real devices are accurate and mimic the exact user behavior of using the application. User acceptance tests are usually performed using real devices and not on simulators.
Downside is that you need to purchase the device or acquire a cloud account with real devices support.

Testing on Simulators/Emulators.

Simulators and Emulators are tools that intimates the functionality of real devices on host machines which are different from real devices. The emulated behavior closely resembles the real device behavior. We can create emulators and simulators by installing software provided by the developer teams from iOS, Android and Windows.

Examples of developer tools:
xCode
Android SDK or Studio

Advantages of Emulators
Cost: Most emulators and simulator are free of cost. You don’t need to purchase any hardware for testing. You can install the SDKs and create virtual devices.

Testing on emulators is relatively easy and fast. Downside is that tests are not accurate. Simulators are not real platforms or devices. Some functionality cannot be tested using simulators for example: attending an incoming call etc.

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