Mobile App Testing Tools: 6 Top Solutions and Which Is Best
The mobile application development sector of the software development industry is on a great upward trajectory. This is because of the exploding amount of smartphone users, which numbers in the billions. However, the ease with which you can use the app will be the deciding factor of its sustainability—in short, whether it will last the test of time and experience a rise in the number of users. You might ask, How do I, as a mobile app developer, predict this future performance index? The answer is simple: you can get to know all you need for the future of the app at the testing phase of the development. Additionally, during testing, you can mitigate all possible risks that can sink your app's future.
In this post, we'll be discussing the different mobile app testing tools. We'll also be looking into the special benefits and drawbacks of each. More so, we'll also seek to understand their architectural peculiarities, such as the programming languages and OSes each readily supports.
Mobile App Testing Tools
Mobile app testing tools are tools that help mobile app developers carry out the various tests needed on the app. There are many tools in the market presently. We'll be giving a rundown of a select few, which we'll classify into scripting solutions and others (codeless and low-code solutions). Note that these aren't listed based on any specific order or popularity.
Scripting solutions are mobile testing tools that require knowledge of coding for test creation. This is because engineers need to write lines of code to instruct the tools on the actions to execute. Mobile app developers can execute this test since they're conversant with coding.
Therefore, it's important to use tools that support multi-scripting languages. In cases where you'd be using a language different from that of the mobile application, it's best to hire a test engineer who's experienced in the language of choice. In this section, we'll explore scripting test tools, where they're suitable, and their drawbacks.
Selenium is an open-source automated framework; it's a collection of tools. These tools include the Selenium Remote Control (RC), Selenium IDE, WebDriver, and the Selenium Grid. Selenium is known mostly for mobile web app testing. It supports a variety of languages including Java, Python, Ruby, Pearl, and C#.
This framework is mostly useful for mobile web applications. This is because it's built for cross-browser testing and automation. Its IDE provides a simple record-and-playback of interactions with the browser. The advantages of Selenium include that it
- offers support for testing across multiple simulators with Selenium WebDriver;
- enables testing across multiple platforms and browsers;
- is a free and open-source software; and
- is suitable for unit and integration testing.
The Selenium team provides codeless Selenium. With codeless Selenium, the tester doesn't need any knowledge of the programming languages above. Instead, they'll utilize a user interface to test their application. A major drawback is that Selenium can't access elements outside the web application under test. Also, it doesn't support native application testing. Therefore, developers can't execute tests for hybrid or native applications on Selenium.
Robotium is a free app testing framework designed for running mostly UI tests on Android apps. It was built on Java. With Robotium, you can test Android apps with the source code available as well as apps with only the APKs available. This is one of the advantages of Robotium that distinguishes it from other solutions. Developers can run tests on the application APK without needing the source code. With this method, they don't need to set up a large test suite.
Another major benefit is that it's free. Ease of writing code and speed of doing things is guaranteed with Robotium. It executes tests very quickly, and it has the ability to make its own decisions. Robotium supports native and hybrid applications. The scripting language Robotium supports is Java.
However, Robotium has a few drawbacks, such as its ability to handle just one application at a time. Additionally, it doesn't accommodate flash or web components, thereby not allowing mobile web testing. It also doesn't support cross-platform testing, only Android.
Espresso is a mobile app testing tool developed at Google for Android apps. It's perfect for running tests on native Android apps. It's mostly useful for tests on the application's user interface (UI). Java and Kotlin are languages used to create the test scripts on which Espresso runs. It can test individual components of the app as well as the entire black box. While Espresso is the perfect tool for testing UI of Android Studio and mobile web applications, it has the following drawbacks:
- it is suitable for only UI testing, and
- Espresso doesn't support cross-platform testing, only Android applications built with Android Studio.
Espresso is most suitable for UI mobile developers. This way, they can test the user interface of the application in depth.
Our scriptless mobile app testing tools consist of codeless and low-code solutions. These terms refer to testing tools that don't require prior knowledge of coding. While writing scripts for tests is a great idea for large teams with lots of developers or testers, small teams don't have that luxury. This is because it takes a lot to prepare these test suites and maintain them. Therefore, smaller teams and even larger teams are switching to low-code solutions, to cut down costs and improve efficiency.
However, some tools aren't completely codeless. For example, they can come with a dashboard as well as an option for script automation for complex tasks. This leads to the term low-code solutions. With low-code solutions, engineers don't need to write code for test automation all the time. They only write tests when they want to execute a specific task or complex tasks. Now, let's explore the testing tools that fall in this category.
TestComplete is an automated mobile app testing tool developed by SmartBear. It supports both Android OS and iOS. This tool is a low-code solution. You can create automated mobile tests by capturing user actions. With this recording, the developer can run debugging tests to pinpoint what's breaking. Developers can set up TestComplete using the Appium server. This is very useful for people who have prior knowledge of Appium.
- TestComplete isn't cross-platform; it supports only Android and iOS. Therefore, you can't test native applications for Linux or Windows.
- Sometimes, testing applications on different screen resolution is a problem with TestComplete as it isn't fully dots per inch (DPI) aware. This is because, when a user changes the DPI setting of a display, the operating system increases the size of UI elements. This may cause issues with playing back tests on displays with various DPI settings or how elements are displayed.
- While recording the state of your application, you can't change the screen window. This is because it'll alter the test result.
Perfecto handles testing for both web and native apps. It provides end-to-end mobile testing via a cloud test lab. It offers integration for a lot of tools ranging from automation tools to CI tools and the like. Perfecto provides smart analytics for improved feedback on tests. It avails a unified cloud based platform for your testing.
With Perfecto, you can test your application using an emulator, simulator, or a real device. It supports cross-platform testing as well as mobile web testing. The advantage of Perfecto is that it supports parallel testing, elastics scaling, and remote access to developers.
The major drawback of Perfecto is that it isn't free. Additionally, although Perfecto supports manual and automated testing, it doesn't allow the use of cameras and Touch ID features. This is a huge drawback for manual testing. For mobile web testing, Perfecto is slow and lags. This makes testing time consuming and makes it difficult to determine when the application is generally slow.
Waldo is a top-notch automated testing tool trusted by both iOS and Android app developers. It boasts being the first no-code automated testing tool. This means that someone in management or who doesn't have programming skills can run tests on apps perfectly. Waldo runs an all-inclusive test on your app build and notifies you of any bugs, crashes, and UI issues on its dashboard. These tests include functional tests, UI tests, and many more.
Waldo is a cloud testing tool. It allows the integration of Git platforms for continuous testing. Therefore, when you add a new build of your product, Waldo will automatically run tests. Next, Waldo will notify you of the bugs in the application. It has cross-platform support as well gives integration support to a variety of your in-use tools and platforms. With this tool, you need not to bother with scripting; just keep on shipping.
You can test your applications anywhere with Waldo; you don't need to be in the same location. It's suitable for remote teams, especially in this era of remote working. Waldo also supports end-to-end testing, recording, and test flows that involve the camera directly from Waldo. Waldo is very fast; it offers the perfect setup for complete mobile application testing. Learn more about Waldo.
Which Tool Is Best for Mobile App Testing?
A great test is a result of a great testing tool. So, now that you understand mobile app testing and the different tools available, it's time to ship and test your applications. Now's the time to pick a tool for your tests among all the listed. Which tool do you think is the best for you?
Waldo offers a great variety of benefits and services with zero drawbacks. You'd do well to schedule a demo with Waldo and behold the wonders we have to offer.