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Need to know all the answers behind How to Test a Mobile Application? You will get the entire detail and in-depth knowledge about:

  • The technique behind mobile app testing
  • Strategies for testing
  • Main stages behind the process of mobile app testing
  • Specifications of iOS and Android mobile app testing

Nowadays, with the gradual advancement in smartphone technology, software developers are finding a big career in the field of mobile application development. Many companies are now shifting their business-models towards mobile applications and these apps are now millions in number in the market.

The fact is that there are those few apps in every niche that have truly been capable to earn their mark and govern the world of mobile apps. In such a high ratio of competition in the market, you should make sure that you are offering a high-quality, glitch-free app to your customers apart from something attractive and innovative.

Standard Definition of Mobile Application Testing:

“Mobile Application Testing is a process by which mobile apps are tested and examined to get required quality, compatibility, characteristics, functionality usability, functionality, compatibility, usability, and performance and all other features in that app.”

Specifics of Mobile applications:

There is a big difference between the mobile applications and that for desktop. Hence, we must keep it in our consideration during the planning of mobile app testing. Let’s analyze the main distinctions between both mobile and desktop applications:

System’s Capacity:

  • The system of mobile device doesn’t have a powerful stuffing.
  • It could not be used as a personal computer.


  • This process of mobile application testing is performed on smartphones (Samsung, Nokia, Apple, etc.)
  • Whereas the desktop applications are tested on a specific processor.


There is a variety of mobile devices screens, their

  • Colors
  • Display
  • Extensions
  • The screen of a smartphone is smaller in size than desktop ones.

Main feature:

  • Receiving and making calls is the foremost job of the mobile phone.
  • This is the reason that the mobile application will not conflict with this main function of a mobile.

Operating Systems:

There is a vast variety of a particular operating system and all the configurations:

  • Android
  • IOS
  • BlackBerry etc.

Phone OS:

  • Mobile Phone OS immediately shifts toward obsolete.
  • Besides, the updating of OS is also limited.


  • Network connections “3G, 4G, Wi-Fi” are used by mobiles
  • While desktop mostly deals with a broadband connection.
  • Smartphone devices continually seek networks.
  • So, you must test the mobile application at several “data rates”.

Mobile Applications Categories:

There is another essential element in the process of mobile application testing that is the type of application. The types of mobile apps play a vital role in entirely defining the testing process. Hence, it should be clear about the type of mobile application one is going to take under the test. Mobile apps are broadly classified into three main types:

  • Mobile web applications
  • Native Applications
  • Hybrid Applications

Mobile Web Application:

“The main feature of a mobile web application is in fact, is a website that is opened in a mobile or a tablet by using a smartphone browser.”

Benefits of the Mobile Web Apps:

  • Easy to develop.
  • Easy to access.
  • Simple update.
  • Mobile Web App doesn’t need any installation.

Defects in Mobile Web Apps:

  • It doesn’t have any support for offline capabilities.
  • Confined functionalities in association with Native and Hybrid Apps.
  • Don’t have any access to the Local resources and file system.
  • App Store and Google Play do not support the redistribution of mobile web applications.

Native Apps:

The main feature of the native app is that these kinds of applications are developed particularly for a single platform “Tizen, Android, Windows 10 Mobile, iOS, BlackBerry.”

Benefits of Native Applications:

  • These apps are capable to work offline.
  • It could use all the features of its mobile device.
  • Advancement in the user’s experience.
  • Users can be alert by push notifications.

Defects in Native Apps:

  • Native Apps production is more expensive as compared to a mobile web application.
  • It needs a big cost for its maintenance.

Hybrid Application:

“Hybrid Application is a mixture of both Mobile App and Native App. It could be described as the content of mobile website exposition in a format of application.”

Benefits of Hybrid Apps:

  • More cost-effective as compared to the “Native Application”.
  • Easy to distribute.
  • Embedded Browser.
  • Unique features in Device.

Defects in Hybrid Apps:

  • It operates slower than the Native App.
  • The graphics are low in quality to OS as compared to the Native Application.
  • Key Points and Strategies of Mobile Apps testing:
  • Now it is needed to think about our strategy of testing. Let’s have a look at the main points and difficulties we have to face in this process.

Devices selection:

There is not a single doubt that an original mobile device is the most suitable choice if you require to test your mobile app. Mobile Testing on a genuine device gives you the best accuracy in the results. On the other hand, it is not an easy task to determine the most suitable device.

Anyhow, there are some main steps you must need to do while choosing a device for a mobile testing process:

  • You have to make an analysis to determine the most used and successful gadgets in the market.
  • Select devices with separate OS.
  • Select devices have distinctive resolutions of their screens.
  • Give consideration to these factors as well: memory size, connectivity, compatibility, etc.

Advantages for mobile app testing on a real device:

  • High correctness in the result of app testing.
  • Replication of bug.
  • Some points like Geolocation, Devices built-in sensors, battery drainage, and push notifications are comfortable for testing there.
  • Capability to examine the interrupts “calls, SMS”.
  • Effective in testing a mobile application in a real-time condition and environment.
  • Free of wrong positives.

There are also a few drawbacks:

  • A large number of often-used devices.
  • Required extra expenses for the device maintenance.
  • Confined access to those devices that are used in foreign countries.

You could see mobile app testing on real devices is a good decision. But it has also a few limitations as well. You must defeat them in order to perform mobile application testing.

Emulator Or Simulator…?

Emulators or simulators both are broadly used for the process of testing mobile apps in the market. But the main question is what is meant by Emulators or Simulators? These are the tools that have the capacity of emulating or simulating the working and behavior of a smartphone device.


“An emulator is a replacement of the original device that offers you to operate the application on your device without the need to modify them.”


“Simulator does not emulate the hardware of the mobile while it could set up an analogous environment, as like the OS of your real mobile.”

Therefore, simulators are favored for mobile application testing. Whereas, Emulators are more suitable for mobile web app testing.

Benefits of using Simulators in mobile app testing:

  • Simple Setup.
  • Efficient working.
  • It helps to explore and verify the performance of the mobile application.
  • Cost-effective.

Drawbacks of using Simulators in mobile app testing:

  • The hardware of the device doesn’t take into consideration.
  • Possibility in the chances of false positives.
  • Data obtained as the result of the simulation is incomplete, 
  • It makes a few problems in the entire analysis of the obtained results.

Cloud-Based Testing:

Cloud-Based testing allows mobile devices to operate on various networks and systems. Cloud-based mobile app testing assists in eliminating the drawbacks of the real devices and simulators.”

The testing of mobile apps with the help of Cloud-Based tools is a favorable choice. It could assist you to reduce the disadvantages of simulators and real devices.

Advantages of this strategy:

  • Easily available.
  • The capability to run smartphone devices on multiple networks and systems.
  • The tendency of not just to test, it can also manage and update apps in this process.
  • Cost-effective.
  • Highly scalable.
  • This similar script could be run on various mobile devices in a parallel way.

Some weak points of cloud-based mobile app testing:

  • Fewer controls.
  • Deficiency of a high level of security.
  • Its dependency on internet connection.

You can get assistance if you want to know about some of the most helpful cloud-based tools on BugEspy by clicking here

Mobile Manual Or Automated Testing?

There are some app testers who support Manual Testing whereas some of them consider automated testing is better. But in fact, both manual testing and manual testing almost have the same importance.

  • Some scenarios are there in the devices that are tested is the best way with the process of automation testing,
  • While there are also some things that give the best outcomes with the process of manual testing.

In today’s world, several experts recommend that manual testing is moving towards its death. Whereas, it’s not valid. It is a fact that we could not do this process done without automated testing. There are also some conditions where manual testing is more preferred.

Advantages of the Manual Mobile App Testing:

  • This testing is cost-effective in a short time interval. 
  • This testing is more flexible than automated testing.
  • More reliable simulation of user’s operations.

Defects of the Manual Mobile App Testing:

  • The cases of manual testing are difficult to reuse.
  • This process is less efficient in executing constant and certain tasks.
  • The process of test running is slow.
  • A few kinds of test operations are not executed by manual testing “load testing”.

Pros and cones of Automated Testing


  • The process to run the test is quite faster.
  • This testing is cost-effective for a long interval of time.
  • The cases of automatic testing are quite easy and simple to reuse.
  • Just a single option for some sort of testing “performance testing”.
  • It is easy to share the test results in this testing.


  • There are some limitations to the tools of automated mobile testing.
  • This process is time-consuming.
  • Automated testing is not much efficient in setting positive customer or user-friendliness experience.

Efficient Way:

The mixture of diverse approaches looks like an effective way. Just as an example, simulators can be used in the initial stages of the process of your app testing. While it is a good practice to use original devices “cloud-based or physical” in the last stages. For both the Regression and load testing the process of Automated testing mostly is preferred. Whereas, it is better to use manual mobile testing tools for usability and exploratory testing.

Stages For testing Mobile Application:

Now, let’s begin with the consideration of the foremost and essential stages of testing mobile applications. These stages are mostly the same as the stages of website testing but are not quite similar to that. There are a few basic distinctions between both desktop and mobile apps. That’s why it is required to pass the mobile application through some extra stages for some verifications.

Documentation Testing:

Documentation testing plays a role in the essential preparatory stage in the process of mobile application testing.

  • The process of testing begins even before the process of software development.
  • Professional testers get some screen layouts, navigational charts, and other demands that are not in the design.
  • The testers analyze these requirements for inconsistency and completeness.
  • Differences in the demands should be fixed before the starting of the development process.
  • Requirements like Traceability Matrix, Test Cases, Test Plan, are analyzed and created on this stage of app testing.

Functional Testing:

It assists you either your mobile app serves according to the expectations and the required specifications. You have to keep these factors in your consideration while performing Functional Testing for your mobile application:

  • Your application’s business functionalities as, like a game industry, tickets, education, food delivery, social networks, banking, etc.
  • Distribution Channels of that app like App Store, Direct delivery, Google Play, etc.

The main operations performed in functional testing of a mobile application:

  • Installation and running the testing app
  • Fields Testing.
  • Testing Business Functionality of Application.
  • Testing of App Interruptions.
  • Users Feedback Testing.
  • Testing of Updates.
  • Testing of device Resources.

Usability Testing:

Usability testing helps to guarantee the comfort of utilizing the mobile application, generates an instinctive interface corresponds to the acceptable standards. It is made to build user-friendly and fast applications. There are three main principles for the evaluation of the app:

  • Efficiency
  • Satisfaction
  • Effectiveness

Let’s examine a basic checklist for testing the usability of a mobile application:

  • Make it clear that all the buttons are of normal size and are present in a specific area of a smartphone screen.
  • When it is required, verify the working of the mobile app in multitasking mode.
  • Examine the navigation of all the important modules of that mobile application. 
  • Assure that the pictures and icons are looking natural in that application’s environment.
  • Check all the given Color of buttons that are performing similar functionality.
  • The texting must be visible to the user, simple, and clear. Short paragraphs and sentences are feasible to read.
  • Specify the optimal size of the font.
  • Assure the correct execution of both the systems of the Zoom-in & Zoom-out.
  • Make sure that the given context menu should not be overloaded.
  • Verify that the testing app could be stopped at any stage and can resume its operation in that same stage.
  • Assure that all the elements of application components are synchronized along with all the actions of the user.

Useful tools for the process of usability testing:

User ZoomReflector, Loop11.

UI (User Interface) testing:

User Interface (UI) testing ensures that all the specifications meet the requirements of the GUI of your app. 

There are few verifications to UI testing of mobile application:

  • Assure the compliance with UI standards
  • Check UI of your mobile application with all the standard resolutions of the screen like 640 × 480, 800 × 600, 1024 × 768, 1280 × 800, 1366 × 768, 1400 × 900, and 1680 × 1050.
  • Verify the response of mobile application on various devices.
  • Test the principal design component: Icons, Buttons, Links, Labels, Text Formatting, Text Boxes, Layout, Colors, etc.
  • Make sure that the advertisement should not overlap with the application’s control buttons.
  • Verify that advertising has a closing button easy to access.

Compatibility (Configuration) testing:

The process of compatibility testing verifies mobile app’s optimal performance on various smartphones according to their hardware, version, screen resolution, size, etc. This testing is also responsible for:

  • The OS configuration
  • The browser configuration
  • Data-Base configuration
  • Configuration of device
  • Network’s configuration

Further, configuration testing is divided into:

Cross-Platform Testing:

Test the compatibility of your mobile app with various Operating Systems: Windows, Android, BlackBerry, and iOS, etc.

Cross-Browser Testing:

Test the compatibility of the mobile app in several browsers like Google Chrome, Opera Mini, and Mozilla Firefox, etc.

Data-Base Testing:

This process tests the compatibility of your mobile apps in various configurations of databases like Sybase, MySql, Server, MSSQL, Oracle, and DB2.

Device Configuration Testing:

Test mobile app’s compatibility on devices on the base of

  • Device Type: Tablet, Smartphone, etc.
  • Device Configuration: Screen Resolution, Battery Capacity, RAM, Processor Type, etc.

Network Configuration Testing:

Test mobile application’s compatibility in various network configurations like “TDMA, GSM” & standards “2G, 3G, 4G”.

Performance Testing:

Performance Testing assists to test the reactions and constancy of your application under a particular workload.

Performance testing includes

  • Load Testing: This process is used to check the behavior of the application under normal & extreme loads.
  • Stress Testing: This testing is done to check the ability of the mobile application to sustain stress. It makes confirm that the application can bear extreme level stress.
  • Stability Testing: It checks the ability of your application that either it could operate well for a longer time in normal loads.
  • Volume Testing: It verifies your app’s performance when it is operated to a large volume of data.
  • Concurrency Testing: It is used to tests your app’s performance in a state of various users logged-in at the same time.

Security Testing:

  • This testing confirms all features of the security in your application.
  • Further, it analyzes all the possible risks of apps unauthorized access, viruses, and hackers to your sensitive data

Recovery Testing:

Recovery testing is used to test the compatibility of your app to recover successfully from all potential and possible failures due to the result of hardware failure, software issues, or communication failures.

Localization Testing:

Localization testing checks the flexibility of your mobile app for an audience specifically target on the base of cultural specifics.

Change Related Testing:

Ultimately, when application testing is completed, you may notice some errors, in a specific part of the code. When these codes are changed you would need to perform this round of testing once again. This includes:

  • Re-Testing/Confirmation Testing: used to test all the errors detected are fixed successfully.
  • Regression Testing: Sometimes with the changes in code the proper functions of working could be disturbed. Regression Testing is performed to make sure that the new modifications haven’t led to the new bug’s appearance.

Beta Testing:

Beta testing is performed by actual users on some original devices to confirm the reliability, compatibility, functionality, and usability of the mobile app.

Before starting the process of beta testing it is needed to take these following factors in account:

  • Testing Participants Number
  • Testing Duration
  • Shipping
  • The Demographic Coverage
  • Cost for Test

Beta testing is a good feature that ensures a good quality of the mobile application.

Certification Testing:

Certification Testing makes it confirm that either the application is meeting all the 

  • Agreements
  • Licensing
  • Standards 
  • Terms to use

And the requirements for the stores like:

  • App Store
  • Google Play
  • Window phone

Popular Tools For Mobile App Testing:

Functionality Testing Tool:

  1. Ranorex
  2. Appium
  3. Robotium
  4. Selendroid.

Usability Testing Tools: 

  1. Loop
  2. User Zoom
  3. Reflector

Mobile App Interface Testing Tools:

  1. iMacros
  2. FitNesse
  3. Jubula
  4. Coded UI
  5. LoadUI

Compatibility Testing Tools:

  1. CrossBrowserTesting
  2. BrowserStack 
  3. Browsera 
  4. Litmus
  5. Rational ClearCase
  6. Ghostlab

Performance Testing Tools:

  1. Apteligent
  2. NeoLoad
  3. New Relic

Security Testing tools: 

  1. OWASP Zed Attack Proxy
  2. Retina CS Community
  3. Google Nogotofail
  4. Veracode
  5. SQL Map.
We hope this article may give you a comprehensive understanding of mobile app testing.

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