What is a mobile test automation framework?
Mobile test automation frameworks are the environment to run automated tests for your iOS and/or Android solution. They are used to save time on all the manual inputs and also achieve higher consistency than a human tester would. The time savings are enormous as long as you are managing the testing process right.
It’s common knowledge that you should choose the best mobile app development framework for your project from the start. Migrating somewhere else can be painful, especially if you have to maintain the product and/or release updates regularly at the same time. It is less of a problem in QA, but you would still be wise to avoid the common mistakes while choosing mobile test automation framework.
Mistake 1: Having the wrong automation mindset
Test automation is really powerful, but not every company takes the right approach to it. You can’t use test automation as your saving grace to avoid setting manual QA straight first. You can’t use test automation as a way to break up the testing routine. Set some reasonable goals and how they will materialise in deliverables before you consider even choosing a simple mobile test automation framework.
Mistake 2: Not centralising your tests
When you adopt test automation, one challenge that immediately comes up is how it will mesh with your manual tests. Ideally, you are already using a software test tool that can store manual and automated tests. If not, you should immediately find a test management solution that does that. You start missing nuance and significant issues by splitting the effort between multiple tools.
Test management solution that creates synergy between manual and automated mobile tests
Mistake 3: Not exploring pricing enough
It is no secret that software for making software can get pretty expensive. It gets so even faster when you’re talking about cutting-edge solutions and a high number of users. You will need licences for at least test automation engineers (if not all testers) and devs. Apart from great functionality, the lack of any fees is what makes Appium a really popular mobile test automation framework.
Mistake 4: Not preparing for cross-platform challenges
Your mobile test automation framework should be able to handle things according to where your software may have come from or will be ported to. A good example here could be mobile games. While some games support keyboard & mouse and will be even better to play on them, KBM inputs are not universal functionality found in all mobile frameworks.
Mistake 5: Not looking into the framework’s future
Your project may have been unusual enough to warrant extra research into frameworks. You have finally found the perfect one, except it does not seem to be getting much support from devs. Do you still go ahead and pick it? Unless you really can’t avoid it, the answer is no. It is no coincidence that hobby devs pick Python as their go-to programming language or that QA specialists default to Selenium for web test automation. Community support is often what keeps popular solutions going, and our advice is for you to consider if there is a driving force behind the framework.
Mistake 6: Not considering adoption challenges
Mistake 7: Not accounting for redundancy
Ideally, test automation is where you do most of the work once and then keep refining it to save time. Unfortunately, picking the wrong framework will mean you are almost looking at more trouble than it’s worth. One example here would be using Espresso to test software released on both Android and iOS. The solution does not support cross-platform tests, meaning you would have to write the same test twice.
Mistake 8: Not studying scope limitations
Both iOS and Android have been running apps in a sandbox for a while, but apps still interact with the outside. You may even be running a setup where the app is essentially a way to access the web application available at your company’s URL. If that is the case, you should probably decide against XCUITest and other frameworks that are limited to application testing only.
Mistake 9: Not looking at performance
Test automation makes running tests faster, but even that takes time. If you have a lot of automated tests (and you did have too many tests to run then manually), even automated test runs can start to take 30+ minutes. You can cut down on that by picking a framework that provides the highest speed relative to how your product was developed. Espresso, for example, is lightning-fast when testing React Native applications.
Mistake 10: Not asking around
Like with most solutions in IT, it takes reviews and feedback of real people to pick the right tool. Spend some time to see what people say on reviews websites. Look at the kind of questions and challenges that users of various frameworks raise on forums. This is the best way to get a fair(er) impression as well as spot less obvious red flags.
Mistake 11: Overlooking the significance of framework selection
Failing to recognise the importance of choosing the right mobile test automation framework can lead to significant bottlenecks in your testing processes. When you hastily choose a framework without careful deliberation, you might overlook its compatibility with your app’s architecture, resulting in complications during the testing phase. Skipping a thorough assessment might lead to an ill-suited framework that could harm your progress and introduce unnecessary complexities in your automation strategy. Hence, taking the time to choose a mobile test framework thoughtfully is crucial for a seamless testing experience.
Mistake 12: Ignoring the evaluation of potential mistakes
The final mistake in the list of mobile test automation framework choosing mistakes involves overlooking the possible issues that may arise without thorough evaluation. Neglecting a thorough evaluation of the mobile test automation framework and choosing mistakes can harm your testing endeavours. Understanding the common pitfalls or potential issues associated with different frameworks is essential. Without acknowledging these critical points, you might repeat common mistakes, select a framework that doesn’t cater to your specific testing needs, or fail to anticipate challenges that could impede your testing process. By not evaluating these aspects, you risk facing avoidable hindrances during the selection process and, consequently, in your testing activities.
Consider a scenario where a team chooses a mobile test automation framework in a rush without carefully examining its compatibility with cross-platform applications. In doing so, they overlook essential compatibility features for their multi-platform app. As a result, the chosen framework doesn’t adequately support cross-platform functionality. Consequently, the team encounters difficulties in handling tests for their iOS and Android applications, leading to redundancy, inefficiencies, and the need to rewrite tests for each platform separately, consequently hampering the overall testing process.
There are plenty of mistakes to avoid when choosing mobile test automation framework. You can avoid most of them if you do some research as well as think hard about why you’re doing test automation and what resources you have for it. Trust us, following these rules is worth the effort.
ALM that works with any mobile test automation framework