Mobile Apps and Website Testing - What Would You Like to See?

Hi everyone,

I'm helping out STC improve the coverage we provide for mobile devices, applications and website testing. This is a really rapidly growing area as more and more companies start to release mobile apps for phones and tablets, and I'm sure a lot of us will be testing these areas soon.

One stat I read last week was that it's estimated that 75% of apps at the moment are not tested prior to submission to the apps stores. Scary....... But I'm sure we can reduce that number :)

I'd like to know what you think. What do you want to know in this area? What should we focus upon? What should we not focus on? How can we help?

Please leave feedback on this thread.

Steve

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How many lines of code, features and users has an average mobile app and how much it costs? How big can they get? What is the average team size for a mobile app? How much time is spent on an average app development? Who are the major players in this area? Are there any good books you know? If 75% of the app are not tested (by professionals), is it possible that beta testing gets to become more important in this field?

Hi Stephen,

It may be because it's late, but I'm not sure what you're asking?
I'll have a go.
I'm currently testing a mobile version of a desktop site & there a few interesting points that I've picked up so far (& would like more info on) which include:
- Theres a mobile version of googlebot - if he crawls your site and you serve him a desktop version of your site, he's not gonna like it!
- We've pushed a lot of the JavaScript back up to the server so the device doesn't need to do it.
- Google analytics (because of the JavaScript) is a pain in the hoop, made significantly easier by the recently added real time stats.
- There's still a lot of voodoo surrounding Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- Need to limit the number of round trips the device makes to the server to not blow the users data usage
- User Agent Switcher FF plugin is a god send - spoofs your FF browser to think it's a mobile device - much easier than using a mobile device, but be wary of different behaviors such as swipe gestures.
- We persuaded our networks team to allow one website in our integration environment to be accessible from outside the company so we can test on mobile devices without having to wait for a deployment to Production.

Is this along the right lines?

Hi Duncan,

What I'm after is people's feedback on what sort of information they would like to see provided from Software Testing Club, and it's associated sites. It could be something like 'How do I form a mobile testing strategy', or 'How can I decide which devices to test', or it could be more detailed like 'How do I do X or Y'. Basically trying to get an idea of what sort of information people are interested in getting from a site like this or provided in training, etc from Ministry of Testing.

You've shared some useful tips there, thanks for doing that :) Also some good points for us to take forward.

Steve

Cool, thanks for the update Steve - I'll have a think on & see if there's anything else I'm interested in. This could get messy!

Thanks for the replies so far. Keep em coming :)

I would love to see a checklist of Operating System standards - so what do Apple users expect a button, screen or whatever to do and what is considered standard practice for Android, Windows etc

Mobile websites vs. apps would be good to bring up. They are very different and each have their quirks.

Current popular devices are always good to know, especially for Android.

Any tools that could be useful, for example tools that help to review how much data is being transferred by an app, how much battery is being used, security, accessing udid numbers etc

I've asked this elsewhere but anything to do with automation would be huge. Lots of tools got mentioned but specific user guides or something would save me loads of time.

Finally, all the apps I've ever worked on have run on APIs which seem to be a vast unknown to testers. Any sort of getting started with APIs, guides to testing them, using them or anything at all really would be very useful.

I think mobile is very different from web which is why testing is a relatively new consideration, right now getting something to market quickly seems to be the main concern and then future releases work on bug fixes which have been reported by users. I don't think it has to be this way but testers do need to recognise that very few apps will be build in the way they are used to and in many cases it is almost impossible to avoid crashes or bugs (due to the fragmented handset market and the unknown impact of other apps).

Tools for automatically detecting bugs?  I did some mobile testing recently and the developer could automatically see details of things like crashes and errors.  This is data is much easier to get on mobiles compared to the web.  I find this interesting from a Testing in Production view point.

Also, 'test automation'.  Is the market maturing? What is the latest with mobile test automation?

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