The mobile app testing market size is experiencing quite a boom, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.28%. One of the big benefits of this for developers is this growth is playing a big role in fueling the development of increasingly advanced mobile app testing tools. However, an increasingly flooded market can make it difficult to decide which solutions are actually worth adding to your workflow.
With mobile app testing tools with automation capabilities being all the rage these days, you may be left wondering whether you should hedge your bets and go with an open-source option or invest in a paid mobile app testing tool to potentially make a bigger impact on your development capabilities.
To help you cut through the noise, we have identified five of the most popular mobile app testing tools. Here we provide a brief rundown of each solution’s features and include third-party review data from either Gartner or G2 so you can learn what others are saying about these tools. Let’s dive in!
The importance of demos and free trials
Before getting right into our list of mobile app testing tools, it’s worth mentioning the importance of free trials and demos. Naturally, open-source solutions will always be free, meaning you can try them out whenever you like, but if you are going to commit to a paid solution, make sure the developers offer a trial or demo version first.
Paid mobile app testing tools can deliver great value for your DevOps team. You’ll have access to a host of excellent features and the support of the vendor should you run into any hassles, but still, signing up for a free trial or scheduling a demonstration will guarantee that you’re shown all you need to know about the platform. You can assess its user-friendliness, get a lay of the land, and begin contemplating ways to incorporate it into your development workflow.
Five mobile app testing tools you need to check out
In no specific order, the five mobile app testing tools and solutions that made our list are as follows:
Selenium is one of two of the hottest open-source automation testing solutions out there (the other being Appium, which we’ll delve into below), so kicking off our list with it seemed like a logical choice.
The platform provides a wealth of features and exceptional flexibility in addition to facilitating no-code testing via its record/playback features. Additionally, Selenium is designed to test web applications in browsers like Safari, Firefox, Chrome, and Edge. It can test applications on multiple operating systems, but its mobile testing capabilities are quite limited.
The growing suite of Selenium tools currently includes WebDriver, Selenium IDE, and Selenium Grid, and although Grid and IDE are quite capable, WebDriver represents Selenium’s Achilles’ heel. Though it does allow developers to interact directly with the browser, it is notorious for slowing down in the midst of tests, potentially negating the time saved by leveraging testing automation in the first place.
Nevertheless, Selenium has a high rating on Gartner, having accumulated several hundred reviews, but reviewers do make a point of noting the need for third-party plugins and the platform’s lack of “Windows application support.”
With Appium, your team can support test automation for hybrid, mobile, and native applications on Android or iOS operating systems. When writing tests, you will have your choice of programming languages, a few of which include C#, Ruby, and Java. In addition, the Appium user community is huge, and with thousands of contributors and active users, it only seems to be growing.
The main downside to Appium is that it relies on WebDriver. Like Selenium (and other platforms based on the tool), Appium will slow down quite a bit as you build out your tests. Also like Selenium, Appium is highly rated on Gartner, though users have categorized its initial setup process as “very tiring” while also mentioning that a lot of workarounds must be performed to connect Appium to real devices.
Developed by SmartBear, TestComplete is a low-code, mobile app testing tool with automation capabilities, compatible with both iOS and Android systems.
TestComplete’s automation capabilities rely on record/playback testing. In other words, you can record user actions, then play them back to perform debug tests and identify which features of your app are breaking.
If you have used Appium before, you will have no issues getting up to speed on TestComplete. In fact, you can set it up within the Appium server. Furthermore, TestComplete allows you to circumvent the slowdowns associated with WebDriver while also taking advantage of Appium’s server network.
However, TestComplete is not without its drawbacks. Most notably, it is only partially dots per inch (DPI) aware, which means that altering the screen resolution of an app can cause issues during record/playback tests.
TestComplete has only accumulated a few dozen reviews on Gartner, and while the feedback is mostly positive, users have expressed concerns about the tool’s stability and speed issues.
Robotium is a free testing framework for Android. It’s primarily used for user interface testing of Android mobile apps, but it has a few other limited use cases as well. The main appeal of Robotium is that it enables you to test apps with the standard APKs (Android packages) or with available source code. If you don’t have access to the source code, you can run the test on just the APK.
With Robotium, you can avoid the need to set up a complex, costly testing suite. You can quickly assess the UI of an application, identify potential shortcomings, and make adjustments to elevate the user experience. Robotium supports hybrid and native apps, but it cannot support web applications — one of its major flaws.
Another significant drawback is that Robotium cannot handle multiple simultaneous applications, so you are limited to running a single test at a time. It also cannot accommodate web or flash components.
The most notable shortcoming of Robotium is its lack of cross-platform testing capabilities. It cannot support Apple testing, meaning developers will either have to ignore half of the market or find a separate testing program for iOS software.
As if this list wasn’t going to have Sofy on it! Sofy is a robust suite of mobile app testing tools. The platform includes Sofy’s Real Device Lab, which you can access via the cloud, no-code “create once, run anywhere” automated testing abilities, and analytics capabilities to help you pinpoint app deficiencies. With Sofy, you can support all of the following efforts:
- Performance testing
- Manual testing
- UX testing
- Real device testing
- SofySense, Sofy’s generative AI-powered personal testing assistant
The Sofy platform is known for its exceptional responsiveness and user-friendly automation capabilities. It doesn’t hurt that Sofy has today accumulated overwhelmingly positive reviews on third-party platforms, including G2. One G2 reviewer described Sofy as a “great platform for ramping up test coverage quickly and reliably” (we love to hear it!).
Although a paid testing tool, Sofy offers a strong ROI. You can get a demo today to try it firsthand.
Mobile app testing tools make testing easier
Adopting mobile app testing tools will help your development team produce higher quality deliverables, meet the needs of clients, and better serve end users. Additionally, using modern app testing technology to automate your testing processes will give you an edge over the competition and maximize your DevOps efficiency.
Whatever tools you decide to use, happy testing!
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed above are those of the contributor. They do not necessarily represent or reflect the official beliefs or positions of Sofy.