Imagine a day without your mobile and you had to work through the day with just a fixed line!
You can see your day falling apart. You will feel handicapped and immobilized. Your smartphones does more than just make calls and send messages. They keep your calendars, remind you to eat the pill on time, direct you to your destination, push real time updates about your portfolios, help you make presentations, act as your wallet, help you reply to an urgent email, buy grocery, make your credit card payments, click pictures, share content with friends, stay connected with family while on travel, see your kids and spouse from wherever you are, possibilities are endless. Smartphones help you stay in sync with your personal and professional life. It is owing to these reasons that an increasing number of people are using smartphones. A Cisco study suggests that by the end of 2013, the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the number of people on earth. By 2017, it is expected that there will be almost 1.4 mobile devices per person.
What do these figures imply? Data is trickling down to the lowest levels across industries and sectors. What can already be seen as fallout of this is that mobile applications are becoming a natural extension of web applications. While this is the obvious thing to happen, it presents great engineering challenges to mobile developers.
A variety of smartphones are available in the market and their clear difference in landscape from desktops/ laptops doesn’t make the task any easier for mobile developers. To add to this is the variety of fragmented platforms that include multiple versions of iOS, Android, Windows, BlackBerry, Symbian, Bada, Brew and dozens of others (as of today, there are 17 versions of Android alone published since its beta release at the end of 2007).
For businesses, this presents an enormous challenge to testing mobile applications across devices and device versions. It will not be an understatement to say that for adequate coverage with respect to mass markets, an application might have to be tested on 15-20 device combinations [Platform-Version-Device Type]. This makes it evident that mobile testing calls for a completely different approach, infrastructure and expertise.
In current times, when the mobile market is highly fragmented, fast growing and dynamic; it is tough for enterprises to own and operate a mobile application testing infrastructure with high utilization levels to justify the investment. It is best for businesses to work with a partner who can deliver testing as a service. The benefits of such a partnership will be faster time to market, with a high degree of functional and security assurance in addition to deep test coverage.
The world today is mobile, so be rest assured that your business must adopt mobile technologies to improve efficiencies and become “always available”. However, in a fast-changing mobile environment, application testing still remains a big challenge. How businesses overcome these challenges to stay ahead of the competition remains to be seen.