What is mobile app testing?
Good question! Mobile device testing is the rigorous run through of mobile apps to check functionality, usability, and consistency. This process can be done manually or using automation.
When figuring out how to build a mobile app, testing may not be the first thing that crosses your mind. And why would it? When you build an excellent product, your first thought isn’t ‘Hmm, I wonder how soon it’ll crash?!’
But here’s why it should cross your mind…
- App crashes are responsible for 71% of app uninstalls
- 70% of users abandon an app that takes too long to load
- It helps give your users a seamless experience
- Testing protects user data from fraud, leaks, and hacks
- It helps your apps get published on the app stores, which will undergo a review prior to being approved
If you’re new to the world of software development, here are some of the concepts that we’ll be introducing in today’s blog: testing, quality assurance (QA) and quality control (QC). They sound intimidating, but by the time we’re done, you’ll know how to make sure your app runs smoothly and consistently.
So, let’s tackle QA and QC. These two terms are often confused and used interchangeably, and both processes are meant to improve the quality of your mobile app, but they aren’t the same.
Quality Assurance (QA) makes sure that all the necessary techniques, procedures, standards, and methodologies have been followed to guarantee that you have an app without any big issues.
Quality Control (QC) validates all these processes, and ensures that your mobile app meets all the techniques, procedures, and standards.
Think of it like an exam you need to pass before you graduate – QA is like marking your attendance for the exam, and QC is making sure you get a good passing mark.
Five Common Types of App Testing
- Functional Testing
Functional testing is the first and probably the most essential type of testing you should perform for your mobile app. The idea is to make sure that your app functions like it’s supposed to, and does what is intended for it to do. Keep a list of all the different functions your app performs, and use that as a checklist to get started with your functional testing. For example, if you’re testing an app for gym workouts, its key functionalities will likely be user registration, a calendar, creating and editing user profiles, messaging, etc.
- Usability Testing
Mobile app usability testing helps make sure your application is easy to use and understandable for your target audience. It also helps uncover ways to improve the UI and UX. It’s quite similar to user research, which we discussed in this blog.
Surveys, focus groups, and A/B testing are great ways to test usability for your mobile app, but keep in mind that your findings may be quite subjective.
- Performance Testing
Users have really high standards when it comes to speed of mobile apps and websites (if you think about it… so do you!) They expect apps to load quickly, and won’t have much patience if things move slowly. Testing your app’s performance allows you to make sure the app is performing well on different devices and under different conditions. Performance testing of mobile applications includes checking your mobile app on different devices, servers, battery levels, and networks.
- Security Testing
Since almost every mobile app requires some kind of personal data to solve its purpose, it’s important to do regular testing to ensure that this data remains secure and confidential. This type of testing is usually performed by security specialists – it helps make sure that sensitive data is kept secure and away from the possibility of fraudulent activity.
Here are some things that common security tests help identify:
- Insecure data collection
- Data storage issues
- Insecure communication
- Issues with permissions
- Compatibility Testing
It’d be near impossible to test the compatibility of your mobile app on every type of mobile device there is because of the differences in operating systems, hardware, screen sizes, and resolutions.
This is why it’ll help to know what type of devices your users prefer, and you can then focus all your testing efforts on those types of devices.
Here are two simple ways to figure out the types of devices you need to focus your testing on.
- Do some research on the types of smartphones commonly used in your target area or region
- Use tools like Google Analytics to get data on the mobile devices that your audience uses
As the number of mobile app users continues to rise, the quality of your app becomes that much more important. If you’re wondering how to build an app that is secure, efficient, and serves its purpose, regular quality testing is essential! Find out more about mobile app security on Adalo’s blog.