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4 min read

Category: Development

07 Feb 2019

07 Feb 2019

4 min read / Category: Development

Testing mobile vs web. Tips for manual testers

Maja Sobierajska


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The most common categories of digital solutions are mobile and web applications. They might share some features but developing and testing them requires a completely different approach. Not to mention the differences between platforms or devices!

Testing an app for mobile phone is different from testing the one for a tablet – or an app that must work perfectly on both, and also on the computer. In order to be a good software tester, one must always remember the differences.

If you’re a junior tester or a person considering a career in Quality Assurance, you might feel a bit dizzy right now. Don’t worry, this article is especially for you! We want to share some tips that’ll help you start your journey with manual testing.

What should you focus on while testing mobile apps?

Connection – and it’s not only about WiFi! You should check the wireless mobile telecommunication technology. Everything works fine on LTE? That’s great, but don’t forget about slower connections, such as 3G. It’s extremely important if the app is supposed to be used outdoors, like Pokemon Go.

Device - many testers forget about checking how the device itself behaves. Does the app work with screen rotation enabled? Make sure it does – it's a very common (and somewhat hidden) reason for apps to crash.

Minimizing and maximizing the screen – let's face it, we all have too many tabs open in a browser and numerous apps working at the same time on the computer. The same case applies to mobile phones. So what if you switch between apps or go to settings on your phone and after a while you want to go back to the app? There might be a surprise crash!

Operating system – developing an app for iOS is different from the development for Android. But the differences should never make the users feel confused! Make sure the main features are the same and work fine on every device.

Version of the operating system – is the app working on iOS11? Nice, but don’t forget about checking on iOS10. It can be a completely different story!

Permissions and security – starting from Android 6 the permissions system has changed drastically. Apart from a different way of acquiring the permissions, the user can also revoke anything in the phone’s settings at any time. Make sure that the app works correctly if the user enables or disables the permissions for the main functionalities even while using the app.

Updates - this is a really important thing, especially when the app is large and already on production. Make sure that the old data won't disappear when the user updates the app with the new release.

Memory leaking - does the app work slower than usual? Are there random crashes? It might have something to do with memory!

Testing the UI and looking for defects – that’s the fun part! But don’t get down to it too early – first check all that’s listed above.

How about testing web apps and pages?

Always use developer tools/console - once you learn how to use it, it'll make testing easier and more fun! It’s vital when you want to check if the frontend works well with the backend, delete cookies or check CSS and HTML.

Browser compatibility - it's essential to check the web page on the most popular browsers (Chrome, IE, Firefox, Safari, and Opera). Never limit yourself just to one browser! Some features might work only in a certain browser and the developer will need to add some code to make it work with the others.

Network connection - check what happens if it's lost. Is data saved? Will the user be able to restore it when the connection is back?

Browsers on mobile – does the web solution look good and work correctly on mobile devices?

RWD (Responsive Web Design) - does the app or website automatically resize, shrink or enlarge when the user changes the dimensions of the window? Are the features accessible? The app should look and work perfectly no matter what size it is!

Testing API (for example with Postman) - remember these: put, post, get, delete. And repeat!

Extra: useful plugins – developers have some plugins that make their work easier. So do testers! We recommend Bug Magnet and Check my links.

We hope this brief article will help you and motivate you to explore the path of becoming a software tester. Use the hints well and get down to testing!

Maja Sobierajska


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