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The Best Tools To Carry Out Mobile Test Automation Effectively

Author: Diya Jones
by Diya Jones
Posted: May 22, 2018
test scripts

The availability of low cost yet powerful smartphones and an affordable broadband have encouraged customers to access the internet on their smartphones. This has made businesses to reach customers through the route of mobile apps. Importantly, the usability and ease of access to such apps have led to a shift in customer preferences. The shift has been observed with customers moving towards the use of apps rather than websites.

Given the changing dynamics of customer behaviour, businesses are competing with each other to take the application development route often at the cost of quality. The rush to reach out to the customers with fancy apps has increased the number of quality issues present in such apps. This has led to a rising graph of cyber threats and has brought into sharp focus the need to conduct mobile application testing.

However, the mobile app testing approach has veered towards the mobile test automation process. The reasons to move away from manual testing include lack of test coverage area, increased testing periods, lesser identification of bugs, and issues with repetitive testing. Needless to say, the human factor involved in manual testing leaves much to be desired. Moreover, as mobile application testing is conducted on a plethora of platforms, devices, and networks, mobile test automation has emerged as the best bet.

The criteria to follow while adopting a particular mobile app testing tool are as follows:

  • Analyse the app and identify the test coverage area including the functions and processes
  • Earmark the tests to be automated
  • Analyse a number of automated test tools and select the one that is suitable for the mobile app
  • Seek approval for proceeding with a particular mobile testing automation tool
  • Begin writing the test automation scripts

Given below are the top five tools to conduct effective mobile test automation.

  1. Robotium: Also known as the Selenium for Android app testing, Robotium is an open source mobile application QA testing tool that allows Java to write the test scripts. It tests the UI of Android based apps including the former’s versions and sub versions. However, on the flip side of using Robotium, the quality assurance team needs to work with the tool’s source code. Moreover, the tool is found wanting when it comes to unlocking a smartphone or tablet. The lack of a proper reporting mechanism like record and play function or the absence of screenshots adds to the tool’s inadequacies.
  2. Appium: The ease of implementation of this open source tool makes it a much sought after one amongst the tester community. It is a versatile tool that enables the testing of all types of mobile apps, be it native, hybrid or mobile web across Android, Windows and iOS platforms. Given the tool’s compliance with Safari and Chrome browsers, testers can have a field day writing test scripts across platforms by using a similar API.

The same feature helps testers to reuse the test scripts across Android, Windows or iOS systems. Moreover, since Selenium exists as the backend of Appium, testers can access each and every functionality of the Selenium framework. As an open source tool, it is updated from time to time by its dedicated group of developers and testers. And the best part is that the tool has a robust reporting mechanism including screenshots and videos.

  1. SeeTest: The tool can be seamlessly integrated with popular open source tools such as Selenium and Appium, thus making it a preferred one for testers. It can run automated test scripts across a range of mobile devices and browsers. The use of SeeTest can drastically reduce the turnaround time as well as significantly increase the test coverage area. Testers can use its many tools such as device reflection, object spy, and test recorder amongst others.
  2. TestComplete Mobile: The tool allows testers to run automated test scripts across native and hybrid mobile applications. It gives the leeway to testers to write test scripts in any of the languages such as Python, Java, JavaScript or VBScript. The tool allows the use of gyroscopes, accelerometers and GPS.
  3. AppDynamics: The tool from Cisco helps in running automated test scripts across mobile devices with different screen sizes and resolutions. It offers an insight into the real time experience of users on iOS and Android platforms.


Conducting mobile app test automation ensures better identification of glitches, a faster turnaround time and an improved customer experience. Testers should, however, choose the appropriate test tool based on the app’s usability and functionality.

About the Author

Diya works for Cigniti Technologies, Global Leaders in Independent Software Testing Services Company to be appraised at Cmmi-Svc v1.3, Maturity Level 5, and is also Iso 9001:2015 & Iso 27001:2013 certified.

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Author: Diya Jones

Diya Jones

Member since: Apr 18, 2018
Published articles: 137

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