Mastering Mobile App Testing: Tips, Tricks & Top Strategies

mobile app testing

23 August 2023 Stephan Petzl Leave a comment QA, Test Methodology

In this article, we’ll discuss different approaches to mobile app testing, types of mobile app testing, and various tools available to aid in testing and developing mobile applications. We’ll also cover different aspects of mobile app testing, including security, performance, compatibility, usability, regression, automation, and best practices.

The basics of Mobile App Testing

Mobile app testing is the process of evaluating the functionality, usability, performance, and security of a mobile application to ensure that it meets the user’s expectations. Testing mobile applications has become increasingly important in recent years due to the widespread use of smartphones and tablets.

Mobile app testing is a crucial step in ensuring flawless performance and user satisfaction. With the ever-increasing popularity of mobile phone applications, it’s essential to test mobile apps on different platforms like Android and iOS. Testing mobile apps can help identify and fix bugs and errors, ensuring optimal performance.

There are several approaches to mobile app testing, including manual testing, automated testing, and a combination of both. Manual testing involves testing the application manually by a human, while automated testing uses software tools to test the application.

Manual Testing vs Automated testing

Let’s quickly summarize the difference between manual and automated testing:

Manual testing is suitable for small-scale testing with a few devices. It is also useful for testing new features before the automation scripts can be updated. Manual testing is more time-consuming and less reliable compared to automation testing. However, it can uncover usability, functionality, and user experience issues that automated testing may miss.

Automated testing is a faster and more reliable approach to mobile app testing. It uses testing tools and scripts to execute test cases automatically, eliminating the need for manual testing. Automated testing is suitable for large-scale testing with many devices.

For more details on the two approaches, visit our article about manual vs automated testing.

Regardless of the approach, testing mobile applications is crucial to ensure that they meet the user’s expectations and provide a seamless experience. In the following sections, we will discuss different types of mobile app testing and the tools and techniques used to test them.

Importance of Testing Mobile App UI/UX

Mobile app UI/UX testing is an integral part of mobile app testing. It ensures that the app has an intuitive and user-friendly interface that enhances the overall user experience. The UI/UX testing process involves testing the app’s layout, colors, fonts, and graphics to ensure they are consistent with the design guidelines and meet user expectations.

Effective UI/UX testing should be performed on multiple devices and platforms to ensure that the design and user interface elements render correctly and consistently. The testing process should also verify that the app’s navigation is simple and guides users towards the desired actions seamlessly.

Using automated UI/UX testing tools like Appium and Selendroid can help improve testing efficiency and accuracy. These tools enable performance testing across multiple devices and platforms, which provides valuable insights into UI/UX issues that may not be detected through manual testing.

It’s essential to conduct UI/UX testing during the app development cycle to ensure UI/UX elements are consistent throughout the app. Testing UI/UX also helps ensure that the design and user interface meet the app specifications and that the app meets user expectations and preferences.

UI/UX testing can reduce post-production app errors and increase user satisfaction. A mobile app that is visually appealing and user-friendly can enhance user engagement and drive better user reviews and ratings, effectively improving the app’s overall performance.

mobile app UI/UX testing

“Effective UI/UX testing should be performed on multiple devices and platforms to ensure that the design and user interface elements render correctly and consistently.”

Mobile App Testing Types

Mobile app testing is crucial in ensuring a flawless user experience. There are different types of testing that app developers can perform, each with its own significance. Below are the two most common types of mobile app testing that developers should consider:

Mobile App Network Testing

Mobile app network testing is a type of testing that evaluates the behavior of an app when the network is slow, unstable, or unavailable. It involves simulating different network conditions to ensure the app is still functional under different situations. This type of testing helps app developers identify any issues related to network connectivity and optimize app performance.

Mobile app network testing can help identify issues with the app’s ability to handle poor network connectivity, such as slow or failed data transfers, crashes, or other issues. It’s important to test the app under different network scenarios to ensure optimal performance.

Mobile App Network Testing

Mobile App Security Testing

Mobile app security testing is an essential aspect of ensuring the overall quality of mobile applications. With the increasing use of smartphones and tablets, mobile app security testing has become more important than ever before.

Mobile app security testing involves a range of techniques to identify potential security threats and vulnerabilities in mobile applications. These threats can include malware, unauthorized access, data breaches, and other security risks that can compromise the privacy and security of users’ data.

mobile app security testing

There are several different ways to conduct mobile app security testing, including:

  • Static and dynamic analysis to identify potential vulnerabilities
  • Penetration testing to identify potential entry points for hackers
  • Authentication testing to ensure that user account information is protected
  • Data transmission testing to identify potential data leaks

Testing mobile app security is important to ensure that users’ personal information and data is not at risk, and to avoid potentially costly security breaches.

Key Considerations for Mobile App Security Testing

When testing mobile app security, it is important to consider several key factors, including:

  • The need for frequent and regular testing to identify new vulnerabilities and threats
  • The importance of testing in different environments, such as different operating systems and network conditions
  • The need for secure coding and development practices throughout the app development process
  • The importance of keeping up-to-date with the latest security threats and vulnerabilities

By considering these factors, mobile app developers and testers can ensure that their applications are secure and provide users with the confidence to use the app without worrying about their personal information.

Mobile App Performance Testing

Testing the performance of your mobile app is crucial to ensure optimal performance and functionality. Poor performance can lead to user frustration and negative reviews, resulting in decreased downloads and usage. To avoid this, it’s essential to incorporate mobile app performance testing in your app development process.

There are several ways to test mobile app performance, including load testing, stress testing, and endurance testing. Load testing involves simulating a large number of users accessing the app simultaneously, while stress testing aims to push the app to its limits by increasing the load until it crashes. Endurance testing involves testing the app’s performance over an extended period to ensure it can maintain optimal performance.

Automated tools like Appium, Repeato, Selendroid, and XCUITest can aid in mobile app performance testing, allowing developers to test app performance on different devices and platforms. Testing mobile app performance is an ongoing process, and it’s essential to continue testing, even after launching the app, to ensure optimal performance and user satisfaction.

Mobile App Performance Testing Image

Mobile App Compatibility Testing

As mobile devices become more diverse in terms of hardware, operating systems, and screen sizes, it is essential to test mobile apps for compatibility. Mobile app compatibility testing ensures that the application functions seamlessly across different devices, platforms, and operating system versions.

It is important to note that bugs or glitches in mobile app compatibility can lead to negative user experiences, which can hurt your app’s reputation. Moreover, users may uninstall the application if it does not function properly on their device, leading to lost revenues and customers.

During mobile app compatibility testing, it is essential to verify if the application’s interface and functionality are consistent across different devices and platforms. This includes testing different aspects like screen sizes, resolutions, and software versions.

One approach to mobile app compatibility testing is to create a matrix of different devices and operating system versions to ensure the app functions consistently across all devices. This ensures that the application works well on a range of devices and platforms, improves user satisfaction, and ultimately enhances your app’s reputation.

Mobile Phone App Testing

Mobile App Compatibility Testing Checklist

Here is a basic mobile app compatibility testing checklist:

  • Test the app on different devices and screen sizes.
  • Test the app on different platforms and operating system versions.
  • Ensure that the app’s interface and functionality are consistent across all devices and platforms.
  • Verify that the app’s features work properly on all devices and platforms.
  • Test the app under different network conditions, such as varying speeds and connectivity.
  • Verify that the app is optimized for all devices and screen sizes.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your mobile app is compatible with different devices, platforms, and operating system versions. This will improve the user experience and ultimately lead to greater success for your app.

Mobile App Usability Testing

Mobile app usability testing refers to evaluating the ease of use and overall user experience of a mobile application. This testing is crucial to ensure that the app meets the user’s needs and expectations. Mobile apps with poor usability lead to negative reviews and a decrease in downloads.

Usability testing can be performed manually or by using automated tools. During manual testing, testers review the app’s design, layout, and ease of navigation. They also analyze the app’s flow by performing tasks, such as creating an account, making a purchase, or searching for information. In contrast, automated testing tools can simulate user interactions to evaluate the app’s usability.

The goal of usability testing is to identify any areas of the app that may cause confusion or frustration for the user. This testing can help improve the user interface and enhance the user experience. Mobile app usability testing is critical for ensuring high user satisfaction and increasing the app’s success.

Mobile app usability testing

Mobile App Regression Testing

Mobile app regression testing is a critical aspect of the testing process. It helps detect and fix errors and bugs that may arise when changes are made to the application. This type of testing ensures that new modifications to the app do not affect its existing functionality. Regression testing is especially crucial when developers update their apps frequently, and it is essential to ensure that they meet the required performance specifications.

Regression testing can be performed manually or automatically. Manual regression testing can be time-consuming and requires a lot of resources. However, it can be necessary for some apps where automated testing is not practical. Automated regression testing is faster and more efficient, and it can help detect issues that may not be easily identified through manual testing.

Benefits of Mobile App Regression Testing

Mobile app regression testing has significant benefits for both developers and users. Firstly, it helps identify and fix issues that may arise when new changes are made to the app, thus ensuring that the app remains stable and bug-free. Secondly, it helps reduce the risk of bugs affecting the user’s experience and improves the app’s overall quality. Finally, regression testing helps save time and costs by identifying and fixing issues early before they become more complicated and expensive to address.

Mobile App Regression Testing

Tools for Mobile App Regression Testing

Several tools are available for automated regression testing, such as Appium, Repeato, Selendroid, and XCUITest. These tools can help test the app’s functionality, identify bugs, and ensure compatibility with different devices and platforms. They can also provide extensive test reports and logs that can help developers debug their code more effectively.

When using automated regression testing tools, it is essential to ensure that the tools are compatible with the application or system under test. Developers should also select tools that provide adequate features and support to make the most of automated testing.

Mobile App Automation Testing

If you’re looking to save time and resources during the mobile app testing process, mobile app automation testing may be the answer. By automating certain testing procedures, manual testing efforts can be reduced, and the testing process can be sped up.

Some of the benefits of mobile app automation testing include:

  • Automated testing can simulate user behavior and interactions, making it easier to spot bugs and errors in the application.
  • Automation can help speed up the testing process, allowing testing to be completed more quickly and efficiently.
  • Automated testing can help ensure consistent and accurate test results.

What are some common automation tools for mobile app testing?

There are many different automation tools available for mobile app testing. Some popular ones include:

RepeatoAn no-code/low-code testing tools that enables people without coding skills to record and conduct automated tests within a few minutes.
AppiumAn open-source tool for testing native, hybrid, and mobile web applications on iOS and Android platforms.
SeleniumAn open-source automation tool that supports testing of web-based applications on different platforms and browsers.
XCUITestAn automation tool specifically designed for testing iOS applications.

When selecting an automation tool, it’s important to consider the specific needs of your mobile app and the resources available for testing.

Android folks might be interested in our article about the basics of Android test automation and our overview on the best test automation frameworks for Android.

Mobile app automation testing

Mobile App Test Planning and Execution

Effective test planning and execution are crucial to the success of a mobile app testing project. Without proper planning and execution, the testing process can be prolonged, inefficient and fail to identify critical issues that can harm user experience.

Before initiating the testing process, it is essential to set test objectives, determine testing scope, identify testing methods, and create a test plan. These steps help ensure that the testing process is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely.

Test case creation is another essential aspect of mobile app testing. Test cases should be designed to cover every functional requirement of the application. This process helps reduce the risk of missing critical scenarios and improves test coverage. It’s also important to ensure that the test cases are automated whenever possible to reduce the testing cycle duration and ensure consistency.

Test environment preparation is critical to successful testing. Creating a test environment that simulates real-world usage scenarios on different devices and platforms helps ensure that the testing process is exhaustive and representative of the user experience.

During the testing process, testers must ensure that they follow the test plan and execute test cases as per the plan. It’s important to report bugs and issues in detail with a clear description, steps to reproduce, and expected result. Any deviation from the test plan should be recorded and reviewed to ensure continuous improvement.

After successful completion of testing, it’s important to review the test results and determine if the application meets the specified acceptance criteria. Any issues or defects that were found during testing should be fixed, and the testing process should be repeated to ensure the problem has been rectified. Once the application meets the acceptance criteria, it’s ready for deployment.

Mobile App Test Planning and Execution

Effective planning and execution are critical to the success of a mobile app testing project. By following the best practices and guidelines outlined above, mobile app testing teams can ensure that the testing process is efficient, thorough, and of a high quality. So, ensure you spend enough time in planning and executing the testing phase of your mobile app development project to increase user satisfaction and engagement with your app.

Best Practices for Mobile App Testing

Mobile app testing is an essential part of the development process, as it ensures the app is high-quality, user-friendly, and meets the intended purpose. To make the most of mobile app testing, it’s crucial to follow some best practices that will help you detect errors and bugs early on, optimize testing time and resources, and deliver a quality mobile app to your users. Here are some essential best practices for mobile app testing:

  • Test early and often: Testing should start as early as possible in the development cycle to detect and fix bugs early on, which saves time and resources in the long run. Frequent testing at regular intervals helps developers stay on top of potential issues and optimize the app’s performance.
  • Focus on user experience: The app’s success depends on how well it meets the user’s needs and expectations. Hence, it’s critical to focus on user experience during testing to ensure the app is user-friendly, intuitive, and easy to use.
  • Test for different devices and platforms: Testing the app on different devices and platforms helps ensure it’s compatible with all devices and operating systems, providing users with a seamless experience.
  • Use automated testing: Automated testing helps save time and resources by detecting bugs and issues quickly. Integrating automated testing into the development process helps developers stay on top of potential issues and streamline the testing phase.
  • Collaborate and communicate: Communication is key to the success of the testing process. Developers, testers, and stakeholders should work together to ensure everyone is on the same page and the app is meeting the intended purpose.

Following these best practices can help optimize the mobile app testing process, ensure high-quality, user-friendly app, and deliver a seamless user experience.

Mobile App Testing Tools

Testing mobile applications is a complex process that requires the use of specialized tools. In this section, you get an overview of some of the most popular mobile app testing tools available.


Repeato is a no-code/low-code automated testing tool, thus enabling people without coding skills to conduct their own mobile tests. Using computer vision and machine learning, the tool lets users quickly create and conduct tests.


Appium is an open-source tool that allows developers to test mobile applications on multiple platforms, including iOS and Android. It supports a wide range of programming languages and test frameworks, making it easy to integrate into your development workflow. Appium also has a user-friendly interface that allows you to create and run tests quickly and efficiently.

Appium mobile app testing tool


Selendroid is another popular open-source mobile app testing tool that is specifically designed for Android applications. It allows you to write tests using different programming languages and test frameworks, including Selenium WebDriver. It also comes with a built-in inspector that allows you to view the UI elements of your application, making it easy to create tests.


XCUITest is an Apple-developed testing tool that is used to test iOS applications. It is built into XCode IDE and is easy to use. XCUITest allows developers to test their applications on physical devices or simulators, making it easy to identify and fix bugs. It also supports a wide range of programming languages, including Swift, Objective-C, and Java.

These are just some of the many mobile app testing tools available; you can find more e.g. here on our article about the best bug tracking tools. It is essential to choose the right tool based on your specific needs and requirements.

Mobile App Testing Challenges and Solutions

Mobile app testing presents a unique set of challenges, which require specific solutions to ensure the highest quality of app performance. Here are some common challenges encountered while testing mobile apps and how to overcome them:

Limited Device Access

One of the most significant challenges of testing mobile apps is the limited access to devices. With so many different devices, operating systems, and versions available, it becomes impossible to test an app on every single device. However, this challenge can be overcome by prioritizing the most popular devices, using cloud-based testing services, or building a device lab to access a wider range of devices.

Mobile Network Conditions

Mobile app testing must also account for different network conditions like 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi. This presents a challenge, as it becomes challenging to test the app’s performance under different network conditions. Solutions to this challenge include using network simulation tools or testing the app in different locations with varying network conditions to ensure its seamless performance in all situations.

Multiple Operating Systems and Versions

One of the most significant challenges of mobile app testing is ensuring the app’s compatibility with different operating systems and versions. This challenge can be overcome by prioritizing the most popular operating systems and versions and using emulators or simulators to test on other devices or versions.

Testing in Real-Time

Mobile app testing must account for testing in real-time, which presents an additional challenge to testers. Solutions to this challenge include leveraging automation testing and creating a test environment that closely resembles real-world usage.

Security Concerns

Mobile apps are vulnerable to security breaches, which presents a significant challenge to testers. Security testing should be performed to address vulnerabilities like data leakage, information theft, and unauthorized access. Solutions to this challenge include using security tools, exploring the app’s code, and testing the app on a secure network.

Integration with Third-Party Services

Mobile apps often integrate with third-party services, which can present a challenge when testing. Solutions to this challenge include thoroughly testing each integration point, testing the app under different scenarios, and collaborating with the development team to ensure all integrations are thoroughly tested.

By implementing these solutions, testers can effectively overcome these challenges and ensure the highest quality of app performance.

Mobile App Testing FAQs: what you really should keep in mind

Mobile app testing can be a complex process, and it’s normal to have questions about it. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions:

What is mobile app testing?

Mobile app testing is the process of checking the functionality, usability, performance, compatibility, and security of a mobile application before it is released to the users. The testing process is usually conducted on different devices, platforms, and operating systems to ensure optimal performance.

Why is mobile app testing important?

Mobile app testing is important to ensure that the application provides a seamless experience to the users. Testing helps to identify and fix bugs, errors, and vulnerabilities before the app is released. This helps to enhance the performance, usability, and security of the app.

What are the different types of mobile app testing?

There are different types of mobile app testing, including functional testing, performance testing, compatibility testing, security testing, usability testing, and regression testing.

What is the difference between manual and automated mobile app testing?

Manual testing involves a human tester manually executing test cases and verifying the results. Automated testing involves using tools and scripts to automate the testing process, which saves time and resources.

What tools are used for mobile app testing?

There are several tools used for mobile app testing, including Appium, Selendroid, and XCUITest. These tools aid in testing and developing mobile applications.

How can I ensure the quality of my mobile app?

To ensure the quality of your mobile app, you can follow some best practices such as conducting thorough testing, using automation testing to save time and resources, testing on multiple devices, platforms, and operating systems, and involving users in the testing process.

What are the common challenges in mobile app testing?

There are several challenges in mobile app testing, including device fragmentation, rapid changes in mobile technology, lack of standardization, and security concerns. However, these challenges can be overcome by following best practices and using the right tools and techniques.

How often should I test my mobile app?

It is recommended to test your mobile app at every stage of the development process. This includes testing during the design, development, and deployment phases. Testing should also be conducted after each update or change to the app.

With these common FAQs, you can now have a better understanding of mobile app testing and its importance in ensuring optimal app performance.

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