Guest Blog Post by Amir Rozenberg, Senior Director of Product Management, Perfecto
Google recently announced “Mobile First Indexing”, from Google:
To make our results more useful, we’ve begun experiments to make our index mobile-first. Although our search index will continue to be a single index of websites and apps, our algorithms will eventually primarily use the mobile version of a site’s content to rank pages from that site, to understand structured data, and to show snippets from those pages in our results (Source).
More recently they made the Google Mobile-Friendly tool and guidelines available. A very nice interactive version is available here, and images at the bottom of the thread, while there’s also an API (which, thanks to Google, can allow users to exercise first before they code). Google also offers code snippets in several languages.
Google takes a URL and renders it. If you run multiple executions in parallel there’s no point in sending the same URL from every execution because the result would be the same
Google returns basically “MOBILE_FRIENDLY” or not. Suggest to set the assert on that
The current API differs from the UI such that it only provides the results for Mobile friendly (and the UI gives also mobile and web page speed). Hopefully, Google adds that to the response 😉
This will probably not work for internal pages as Google probably doesn’t have a site-to-site secure connection with your network.
For developers and testers who do not have time, testing mobile friendliness repeatedly probably will simply not happen. That’s why I integrated Google Mobile-Friendly API into Quantum:
Added 2 Gherkin commands
// If you navigate directly to this pageThen I check mobileFriendly URL "http://www.nfl.com"
// If you got to this page through clicksThen I check mobileFriendly current URL
Added the Gherkin command support (GoogleMobileFriendlyStepsDefs.java)
And the script example is pretty simple:
@WebFeature: NFL validate @SimpleValidation Scenario: Validate NFL Given I open browser to webpage "http://www.nfl.com" Then I check mobileFriendly current URL Then I check mobileFriendly URL "http://www.nfl.com" Then I wait "5" seconds to see the text "video"
As a mobile evangelist at Perfecto, i foresee the entire mobile and web space for the past 10+ years, following major trends both in the device/hardware front as well as the platform/OS (operating System) front.
I was an Apple user for the past 2 years, using an iPhone 6 Plus device both for my personal as well as my work daily activities. Last month i decided it’s time for a change and i replaced my iPhone with a Google Nexus 6P phablet.
Let me explain some of my reasons to that switch:
Quality and Innovation
Quality and Innovation
In the front of quality and/vs. innovation i found out that as a 2 year trend, Apple’s iOS was constantly straggling with quality that mostly came on top of innovative features and end user -experience. For the past 2 years Apple released 10 versions of iOS 8 stopping at a stable GA of iOS 8.4.1, while for iOS 9 Apple released 10+ versionsstopping at a recent 9.3.5 GA release that addresses security issues. To compare this trend to Android platform – Android5.0 Lollipop released in November 2014 and was enhanced till latest version of 5.1.1 (~5 versions in 2 years). Android Marshmallow6.0 was released in October 2015 and since than only had an additional version of 6.0.1 release. Last month (August 22nd) Google released its new Nougat 7.0 release that is available to users (like me) that hold a Nexus device. iOS 10 is just around the corner with the iPhone 7 devices, but based on the current trend and enormous public Beta versions, it seems like no major changes are expected in the quality/release cadence.
In the Android history we see some major enhancements around sensor based capabilities for payment, logging in as well as UX (user experience) features such as multi window support (see below image), android Doze (battery saving capability). In iOS we also see enhancements around sensors like force-touch, apple pay however these features IMO come in short compared to the platform stability over the past 24 months and the platform constrains which i’ll highlight in the next section.
From an ens user perspective, some of the important platform features involves the ability to customize his UX and look and feel of his personal device. Also having the ability to easily manage his media files such as photos and music with a reasonable storage availability. Apple flagship device with massive market share across regions is the iPhone 6/6S with a default storage (un-expandable) of 16GB – I hardly know a person who has this device/storage size that is happy with that, and does not need to constantly delete files, cancel auto savings of WhatsApp media files and alike. In addition, continuously working with iTunes software as a dependency to media/songs sync is a pain and often i found myself losing my favorite music files or getting them duplicated by simply having to switch from 1 PC to another (people do that, and there are procedures that might have prevented this outcome but still). Compared to the above, most Android devices that are not coming with an external storage option are by default coming with a 64 GB internal memory, and in addition working with music file system is a simple and straight forward task to do.
Switching from my iPhone and iTunes to a Nexus device while having my Gmail account was a very simple thing to do, my music, photos and apps easily “followed” me to the Android device that is already running Android 7 in a stable way.
iOS is not all bad, don’t get me wrong – from an adoption perspective, and device/OS fragmentation this is by far a much better managed platform compared to Android that rolls out its latest GA version in a 4-6 months delay to a non-Nexus device (example: Samsung). In addition the iOS tablets are still a leader in that front with 4-6 years old tablets like iPad Air, iPad 2 that are the most commonly used tablets in the market that can still run iOS 9 OS versions. It is not the case when it comes to Android tablets that tend to be replaced by their end-users in a shorter period of time that iPads.
From a future looking perspective, my opinion is that Google is still going to have a global market share advantage over Apple and will continue to innovate with less frequent releases due to quality than Apple. 2017 is going to show us a continuous battle between Android 7 and iOS 10 in a market that becomes more and more digital and mobile dependent, and with this in mind – the challenge of quality, innovation and less restrictions will be even more critical to independent users as well as large enterprises who are already today fully digital.
As an end-user, i would look at both Google and Apple and examine how their overall digital strategy will transform and enable easier connectivity with smart devices like watches etc., as well as less limited storage and device/OS customization. From a Dev and Test perspective i would assume we will continue to see growing adoption of open-source tools such as Espresso, XCTest UI, Appium etc. as a method of keeping up with the OS platform vendors – Only such open-source frameworks can easily and dynamically grow and support new features and functionalities compared to legacy/commercial tools which are slower to introduce new API’s and new capabilities into their solutions.
When building your test lab as part of a RWD site test plan, it is important to strategically define the right mobile devices and desktop browsers which will be your target for your manual and automated testing.
For mobile device testing you can leverage your own analytics together with market data to complement your coverage and be future ready, or leverage reports such the Digital Test Coverage Index Report.
For web testing you should also look into your web traffic analytics or based on your target markets understand which are the top desktop browsers and OS versions on which you should test against – alternatively, you can also use the digital test coverage index report referenced above.
Coverage is a cross organizational priority where both business, IT, Dev and QA ought to be consistently aligned. You can see a recommended web lab configuration for Q1 2016 below which is taken from the above mentioned Index – Note the inclusion of Beta browser versions in the recommended mix due to the nature silent updates of these versions deployment on end-user browsers.
For ongoing RWD projects – once defining the mobile and web test coverage using the above guidelines, the next steps are of course to try and achieve parallel side by side testing for high efficiency, as well as keep the lab up to date by revising the coverage once a quarter and assure that both the analytics as well as the market trends still matches your existing configuration.
As a best practice and recommendation, please review the below mobile device coverage model which is built out of the 3 layers of Essential, Enhanced and Extended where each of these layers includes a mix of device types such as legacy, new, market leaders and reference devices (like Nexus devices).
To learn more, check out our new Responsive Web Testing Guide.
When it comes to RWD testing, it’s important to test the navigation and functionality on desktop web browsers and mobile devices, but that alone is not enough to guarantee a consistent user experience at all times. The end user is constantly moving between environments throughout the day, and these environments have various attributes, including:
Network conditions (Poor, good, no network)
App context based on platform and location
Background activities (apps running and consuming resources)
Ads and other popups that block your site content (see image below)
With so many real user environments to consider for both mobile and the desktop web, testing teams should include user conditions in their RWD test plan on top of the traditional testing for UI, navigation, functionality and client-side performance. It will give your DevTest team peace of mind and reduce quality risks significantly.
To learn more, check out our new Responsive Web Testing Guide.
With more and more consumers expecting to shop, bank, work and socialize across different devices, organizations are embracing responsive web design (RWD) as a tool to help them deliver a consistent digital experience on every screen.
Growth of cross-device transactions (Source: Criteo’s State of Mobile Commerce Report)
But due to the complexity of digital environments and user experiences — responsive web is easier said than done. Organizations that develop RWD sites often face challenges when testing to assure smooth website navigation and a great user experience across multiple devices and platforms.
For more information, read our new Comprehensive Guide to Building a Responsive Web Testing Strategy
To get there, we recommended including the following five building blocks as part of your RWD test plan.
Testing for these five areas will help achieve sufficient test coverage, a great user experience and higher traffic to your site.
To download the complete guide for testing RWD Site, go here
Usually when talking about Web testing, QA teams tend to stick with functional, layout and performance testing. In this blog we would highlight the importance of testing for web apps from the end-user perspective and assuring that the experience is also covered in the test plans.
In today’s competitive landscape many web app sites are exposed to a lot of interrupts whether from web add-ons or in the majority of cases adware popups which often interrupt the user flows within the web page or even cover existing and important content from your web page.
In such cases as mentioned above, Dev and Test team need to asses the impact of such pop ups from upper bar security and other add-ons interruptions together with larger ad pop ups covering your web content – as seen above, sometime even when blocking the ads would not solve the problems since the ad vendor will sense that they are on and will pop a different screen.
As a supporting fact to the pain ads are adding to web site owners, we see reports of more than 5.5 millions downloads of Adblock plus tool for FireFox browser just over the last 30 days.
As a quick tip in this blog – enhance your web test plan beyond functionality and cover the cases of environment conditions.
When developing a mobile or desktop test automation plan organization often struggle with the right scope and coverage for the project.
In previous post, i covered the test coverage recommendations in a mobile project and now, i would like to also expand on the topic of which tests to automate.
Achieving release agility with high quality is fully dependent today more than ever on continuous testing which is gained through proper test automation, however automating every test scenario is not feasible and not necessary to meet this goal.
In the below table we can see some very practical examples of test cases with various parameters with a Y/N recommendation whether to automate or no.
As shown below, and as a rule for both Mobile, Web and other projects the key tests by definition which should be added to an automation suite (from ROI perspective and TTM) are the ones who are:
Required to be executed against various data sets
Tests which ought to run against multiple environments (Devices, Browsers, Locations)
Complex test scenario’s (these are time consuming and error prone when done manually)
Tedious and repetitive test cases are a must to automate
Tests which are dependent on various aspects (can be other tests, other environments etc.)
Bottom line: Automation is key in today’s digital world, but doing it right and wisely can shorten time to market, redundant resources and a lot of wasted R&D time chasing unimportant defects coming from irrelevant tests