Understanding the Differences Between Mobile Application Testing and Web Application Testing

The constant proliferation of mobile devices with diverse configurations required mobile apps to be tested across multiple mobile devices

To meet this demand, businesses began to incorporate mobile app testing along with web app testing as a part of their overall testing strategy.

Bear in mind that web-app testing continues to be critical, given 41% of web traffic still comes through desktop platforms.

The Difference Between Web and Mobile Applications

Web Applications

Web applications are software applications that reside on web servers and are accessed using a web browser. These applications are developed using popular technologies like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and are utilized through multiple browsers like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc.

Adequately optimized web applications can also be viewed across multiple devices like mobiles, tablets, and desktops that provide active internet connections.

Mobile Applications

Mobile applications, as the name suggests, are specifically designed for operating on mobile devices. At a high level, mobile apps can be categorized into three types:

Now, let’s return to the crux of the article.

From the explanation above, it’s quite prominent that web-apps and mobile apps differ significantly in terms of how they are built.

Now, let’s understand the difference between mobile application and web application testing.

Web app testing aims to ensure that websites deliver a highly functional, bug-free experience across browsers and devices. On the other hand, mobile app testing aims to identify any compatibility issues or bugs for the native or hybrid mobile app across a wide range of Android and iOS devices.

In order to do this, it’s critical for teams to choose the right set of tools that lets them achieve faster, more efficient, and the maximum possible test coverage.

Tools or Frameworks for Web Application Testing

Web app testing aims at rolling out applications that deliver a seamless user experience across multiple browsers. It also aims at ensuring that web-applications continue to perform perfectly when accessed from different platforms.

Although there are several commercial tools available, Selenium has been the most preferred tool suite among the QA community for years. It allows QAs to automate website UI tests across popular web browsers like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc. QAs can also run parallel tests across desired environments using a Selenium Grid.

Additionally, QAs can also simulate keyboard and mouse inputs using Selenium to replicate end-user actions. Want to learn how you can execute these actions in Selenium?

A key reason why Selenium has gained popularity is that it provides compatibility with several programming languages. This makes it very convenient for the testers to design test cases.

Tools or Frameworks Used for Mobile App Testing

Listed below are a few popular tools that can be used for running automated tests for native, hybrid, and mobile web apps.

1. Appium

Based on Selenium, Appium is the most preferred open-source tool when it comes to testing hybrid, native and mobile web apps. Using this tool one can automate test scenarios for both Android and iOS apps on real mobiles, emulators, or simulators. QAs need to create separate test scripts for Android and iOS. Appium also allows QAs to choose the programming language to work with.

2. Espresso

Developed by Google, Espresso is a native open-source framework designed specifically for automated UI testing of Android applications. Espresso is a part of the Android SDK and is used for native mobile app development.

Also read: Appium vs. Espresso

3. XCUITest

XCUITest is a UI testing framework that is bundled along with the XCode IDE. It allows testers to automate UI tests for native iOS apps. XCUITests can only be written in Objective-C or Swift. This framework executes iOS tests much faster and is more known for its reliability.

The sole purpose of test automation is to gain faster and accurate feedback to develop bug-free applications.

This can only be achieved by running test automation scripts on real devices.
For this, teams can prefer opting for a real device cloud that allows them to run automated tests across extensive devices.

To maintain a competitive edge in the market, businesses need to ensure that they incorporate both mobile and web app testing strategies with equal importance. Finding the right balance between both and testing on real devices will help businesses cater to a broader audience with confidence.

As a tech geek, I love writing articles about everything related to web development or software testing space.