New mobile devices are being released all the time. Unfortunately, applications that work for one device often don’t work on others. This can make Mobile App Testing extremely challenging for most software development companies.
Take, for example, Android devices. When testing androids, there are approximately 1800 different combinations if one is to test all of the permutations. This number is derived from 130 hardware models times 7 software OS versions times 2 types of firmware. Note that 130 is the number of different devices being manufactured in mid 2011. The number is higher now.
As you can see, it would be impractical to test all of these permutations. At SQA Solution / RentTesters, we offer our clients the perfect solution.
Identifying the Relevant Factors
We have devised a method for decreasing this enormous number of 1000s of permutations and selecting a subset that we perform both manual and automated testing upon.
The critical task as we narrow the list is always to determine which components of the device may have an impact on your application’s behavior. Then we make certain to deal with all of the probable permutations of these factors. Dealing with the factors as opposed to the devices themselves allows us to narrow the testing right down to a subset of approximately ten devices and still provide coverage for over 90 percent of android mobile devices.
Here is a list of the factors that can affect your application behavior:
- The Android OS Version – The Android mobile platform is evolving rapidly. The differences from version 1.5 to version 2.3 are enormous. For example, many new features such as graphics hardware acceleration were included in later versions and may impact the application.
- The Size of the Screen – One of the main concerns must be the screen size of the devices that will run your application. A difficulty for Android applications involves how to create the View layout so that it renders correctly on screen sizes that vary widely. Here are a few examples: WVGA (480 × 800), QVGA (240 × 320), FWVGA (480×854) and HVGA (320 × 480). Furthermore, in tablets, screens are 1024 × 600 for current models and, most likely, the standard screen size will change to 1280 × 800 for tablets of the future. Consequently, running the same application on 240 × 320 screens and simultaneously on 1280 × 800 screens is a significant challenge.
- CPU – Mobile devices are very sensitive to processing power. Phones with a single core usually run at 600 MHz and phones with a duel core run at 1200 MHz.
- Two Final Factors – Two other relevant factors that should be taken into consideration are GPU and the manufacturer.
Our Strategy at RentTesters
To reduce the risks involved in testing mobile devices, we combine the following two effective strategies.
The Edge Strategy
We select phones possessing factors positioned at the edges of the scale. For example: maximum sized screen, minimum sized screen, running the 1.5 OS version, running the latest OS version, and using minimum CPU power. As we combine these factors together, we can end up with fewer than 10 devices.
The Commonality Strategy
After we have selected the appropriate models to test, we analyze the probability each phone has to satisfy your application’s requirements. We then select those with the highest probability of success to proceed with our Mobile Test Methodology.
To see a complete list of Android mobile devices, go to:
To learn more about Mobile Application Testing at RentTesters, go to: