The software industry continues to transition to the cloud. In fact, a majority of software vendors today offer their solutions through the cloud, and many of them primarily position themselves as software as a service (SaaS) providers.
However, this transition can cause anxiety in a customer base not yet ready to embrace the cloud (or no-code approaches coinciding with it). This is often the result of a variety of misconceptions, many of them stemming from obsolete approaches that have since been superseded by technological advances.
In this article, I outline some of the most common misconceptions that I’ve noticed in the industry in general, as well as those I’ve witnessed more specifically around testing within cloud-based or no-code platforms. But before we dive in, let’s take a look at what a cloud service as a general topic.
What are cloud services in mobile testing?
In mobile testing, cloud services are platforms that allow development teams to send testing data to a central, online, and entirely digital location (the Cloud), and to use that service to perform testing. While these services can vary significantly from one to the next, all provide access to either emulators/simulators intended to represent a physical device or to a real-life lab of physical devices.
1. “A cloud-based environment is not safe”
Now, on to the misconceptions! Let’s start with a big one: One of the most common misconceptions that I’ve encountered is that transferring data to a cloud-based environment means compromising security.
However, just because the servers that run the software are in the physical control of a company (whereas the cloud is not controlled by a business’s IT providers), doesn’t mean that they’re any more or less secure than the cloud.
In fact, more times than not, the cloud will be your safest bet. As of right now, the largest cloud providers (like Azure from Microsoft, AWS from Amazon, and GCP by Google) implement numerous safety measures to ensure that your data remains secure, and provide you with the ability to control who can see or access your data.
2. “Privacy is minimal”
Building from the previous point, some consumers tend to believe that utilizing the cloud dilutes privacy. Yet, as discussed above, most providers allow you to control who can see or access your data. This includes any external sources, bots, and/or even internal team members.
Say you want to share data with someone for the sake of completing a task or for the duration of a project. In that case, you can provide restricted access to whomever you want.
For greater peace of mind (and as contemporary standard practice), be sure to ensure that you can also view the logs of any interaction with the data, an automated service generally given by the provider.
3. “My data isn’t safe”
Many companies are wise to be concerned about exposure of sensitive company information. There’s a difference between a data breach and data exposure: A data breach is often the result of a malicious attack, while data exposure is generally accidental in nature.
Data breaches usually result from a lack of proper checks and balances. Today, data encryption at rest (blob storage and databases) and data encryption in transit (HTTPS and SSL) are widely used to minimize the risks of data exposure.
Modern cloud test vendors generally apply high-quality data encryption practices in order to avoid any and all data exposure issues.
4. “Any alteration to the AUT’s (Application Under Test) code requires you to subsequently re-record any tests”
Until fairly recently, using record-and-playback tools meant that developers would have to re-record tests if they changed a web element. The test would otherwise fail.
This was the case even if there was no direct connection between the test and whatever part of the code that was changed. The result was that more time and resources would need to be expended in order to recreate and re-record the tests. This made the whole process highly inefficient.
However, modern record-and-playback tools avoid these problems. Nowadays, any alteration to the AUT’s code simply alters that particular part while keeping the rest of the test intact.
5. “It’s not conducive to a collaborative environment”
Like the preceding misconception, this one stems from how previous test recording tools were confined to one place, in this case a user’s desktop.
Storing any data entailed that data solely residing within the one desktop, which meant attempting to share any of that data across the desktops of your teammates required excessive effort.
However, as technology has progressed, tests have shifted to become cloud-based, allowing collaboration to be easier than ever. Anyone with access to the synced data of the cloud will have access to anything that has been shared or created in the cloud, greatly increasing collaborative efficiency.
6. “No-code automation means spending more money”
No-code automation solutions may seem like they costs more at first. Investing in a good testing tool often means spending a bit more on initially acquiring it and integrating it into your work cycle. However, this investment is also highly likely to save you much time, money, and resources in the long term.
The goal of automation is to accelerate development. Efficiency is the name of the game here. High-quality automaton allows you to spend less time testing and more time on other high-priority tasks. The capability to perform the same amount of work in smaller units of time benefits any operation, and that’s exactly what the No-Code Revolution is all about.
7. “I’m afraid of vendor lock-in”
Vendor lock-in can result from an over-reliance on one vendor for products and services. Migrating data (or databases) is a meticulous process in itself, data for example may have to be adjusted to fit an entirely new environment, but this process becomes even more difficult if a vendor creates barriers to prevent users from switching services.
Although this concern is certainly very valid, there have been recent developments to counteract the potential for vendors to lock-in their users. Specifically, it is nowadays mandatory to provide the opportunity for users to switch vendors due to requirements around legislation such as HIPAA. And users can do so without worrying about any financial or legal consequences.
8. “No-code platforms are only meant for those lacking in-depth coding knowledge”
Companies design the structure of no-code platforms to appeal to and to be useful for developers from all backgrounds, whether they are experienced software developers or business users.
In fact, no-code provides a bridge over the gap between all sides and facilitates collaboration through its integration of visual aspects that remove the initial barrier of having to understand code.
By allowing anyone to contribute and share their work, likely in a Cloud-based environment, conceptualizing and creating a quality product is easily achievable today—and stands to save any team a lot of time and resources.
9. “No coding skills are necessary for testing”
Yes, no-code automation has provided us with the basics to alleviate the struggle of coding and updating tests with the added perk of a simple interface to do so. However, having a little coding knowledge may still be necessary if you desire to fully understand and utilize the capabilities any platform provides.
While the No-Code Revolution marches on, some sectors benefit from no-code solutions far more than others. No-code platforms can vary greatly from one another and some are much more capable and easy to use than others. Some can absolutely leave manual-code in the dust, while others fall short.
The no-code functionality of these platforms means that they will provide the test scripts and update according to what they believe is the optimal standard, but if your definition is different, you may end up wanting to alter a specific part or just be overall unsatisfied with the outcome.
The No-Code Revolution is evolving—and evolving fast. Thus, knowing what to do to achieve the result you want can potentially save you the unnecessary stress of trying to figure it all out later on.
10. “Modifications or tools cannot be added to no-code platforms”
An extension of the preceding point, a common misconception is that customization itself is not allowed on no-code platforms, and so a user assumes they are stuck with whatever functionality the platform originally provides.
However, most platforms actually support customization of their features in order to provide a rich functionality that would otherwise be impossible to obtain. Customized code further means that the user can tailor any of the tests or even create their own in order to best reflect their desired outcome.
It’s no secret that the future is not only no-code, it’s also cloud-based. Interested in seeing what a modern, cloud-based mobile app testing platform is truly capable of? If so, we invite you to give Sofy a try today!
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed above are those of the contributor and do not necessarily represent or reflect the official beliefs or positions of Sofy.