Mobile application testing refers to the process through which application software that has been developed for mobile devices is tested for its functionality, consistency and usability among others. This process can be carried out in two major ways: automated or manual. It is important to note that the two categories of mobile app testing have their distinct advantages and disadvantages. Check out pCloudy for mobile app testing.
The major benefit associated with the use of automated mobile app testing is its speed, which enable testers to accomplish hundreds of simultaneous tests at a rapid rate, with the use of very little effort; thereby ensuring that the application is constantly running. Automated testing is the ideal type of mobile app testing to be employed when a particular product feature is being tested across several range of devices, or when repetitive tests are being executed on mobile devices.
This method of testing is not only fast, but also reliable, as it aids regression testing, and the execution of test cases that are time consuming. The evolution of the mobile app often result in the change of certain features and interface such as product flow, user interface requirements and other specific features. As a result of these changes, an update is required in the automated test script. If the project you are working is small like an MVP, you will find that the upkeep required for the automated app testing is tedious and wasteful.
Note that most automated tests can be reused. However, this has to be done in an agile environment where the automated test scripts have to be reworked and updated. In addition, the process of maintaining automated test scripts often result in specific projects lagging behind in sprint cycles, therefore it has to be adequately looked after.
- It operates at a high speed, therefore, it can test large quantities.
- Automated tests are reusable.
- It helps to save costs over time.
- It can perform tedious tests that manual testers find demanding.
- It enhance the productivity of testers, and reduces monotony or repetitive testing.
- It is able to run a large number of tests at the same time.
- When a simple feature, or a small-scale mobile app is concerned, automated testing is slow and wasteful.
- It has a higher cost to benefit ratio for small-scale apps or MVP
- It is unable to test the experience factors of users
- Code and configurations are usually specific to each mobile app
- It is not particularly fit for usability or UI testing.
- It lacks human insight.
When to use Automated Testing
- Regression testing
- Large projects
- Repeated execution
- Performance testing
- User acceptance testing, etc.
Despite the dominating impact of automated testing, it is difficult (or practically impossible) for it to completely replace manual testing; as it lacks human instinct and precision. Although, automated testing has been designed to detect errors, there are specific ones whose causes are difficult to identify without manual testing. In addition, while automated testing helps to save costs on large-scale apps, an MVP has to be manually tested in its formative stages. This is because the cost associated with conducting automated tests on an MVP might not be sustainable as it is too expensive for small projects. Therefore, if you intend on taking your MVP to the market, manual testing is the appropriate method of testing to use.
Usability testing cannot be tested with automated testing alone, as it seeks to answer questions such as: How will a specific feature work with its users? What kind of problems can the user run into while using it? How many ways can the app go wrong? And many more. The best means of answering these questions is through manual testing, which allows you to test actions like login, search, and launch; it also allows you to test different pathways; and to confirm if the website is loading fast enough, if the buttons have the right size, and many more.
Note that manual testing has to be carried out by an experienced human tester, who is capable of carrying out on-the-spot analysis and discernment.
- Manual testing is a more accurate and perceptive testing method
- It is more cost effective for small projects such as MVP
- It has a more accurate user interface testing
- It is faster for small projects
- It identifies and deal with app crashes easily
- It helps to test probable real-life experiences
- It is equipped to handle the multi-layered and complicated scenarios efficiently.
- It is prone to human error
- It is tedious to test
- It requires expensive human resources
- It takes time
When to Use Manual testing
- Crashes and bugs
- Exploratory testing
- Ad-hoc testing
- Usability testing, etc.
Both manual and automated app testing have their place in the app development cycle, as there is no one-size-fits-all in mobile app testing. It is, therefore, imperative to use a type of mobile app testing that perfectly suit the requirement of the project at the time.