Real-world Testing Tools for Production
More and more eCommerce companies fund and test consumer apps that are centered around mobility. Smartphones have invaded all aspects of people's lives from business ordering to acting as personal assistants, and intelligence forecasts predict that smartphones will account for 59 percent of all phone usage by 2016. Savvy companies don't just develop, buy or release new consumer apps without testing them, and Xamarin's cloud-based testing platform for enterprise apps and their user interfaces offers extraordinary business benefits by validating these applications in real-world business scenarios. A recent study found that consumers spend about 86 percent of their time on smartphones using apps. Mobile devices account for 60 percent of consumer time spent on digital media, so app development is increasingly critical for eCommerce.
The Xamarin Test Cloud
Testing eCommerce applications thoroughly on the Xamarin platform offers eCommerce companies extraordinary benefits by troubleshooting errors in the code, sharing code across multiple operating systems and categorizing and qualifying apps for sale on Google Play and the iOS App Store. Even testing for iOS apps grows increasingly more complicated because Apple products have begun to diverge from each other. Apple iPhones, iPads and Macs have diverged substantially into different ecosystems like OS X and iOS X, and even small changes can affect how apps function and integrate with eCommerce platforms.
Adding Android to the mix of screen sizes, pixel densities and aspect ratios seriously complicates app testing for developers and eCommerce companies. Connection types, battery life, power consumption and usability in global markets also make the process of testing applications overwhelming -- especially if done manually. The Xamarin testing platform simplifies matters by providing technology in the cloud that can test Web apps, native apps and combination apps. Using Xamarin accelerates the testing process of using up to 2,000 real devices. Testers can do everything that their app’s users do -- from pinching and scrolling to swiping and double-tapping. You can track and monitor your tests, record test data, analyze performance issues and test on both Android and iOS. :
- Automate testing on 2,000+ devices
- Bridge the differences between operating systems with Xamarin’s automatic bridging code
- Simplify the testing of international apps where regional traits, target audiences, time zones and language problems, such as right-to-left script, invalidate many testing successes of global products
- Analyze the app’s performance at each step and for every feature
- Prepare apps for immediate distribution on Google Play and the Apple App Store
- Xamarin engineers can help developers to automate their tests for apps
- Eliminate the need for staff involvement, which reduces the risk of human error, or bring in staff at key testing junctures if the eCommerce platform supports this kind of automatic notifications
Developers can test exhaustively with automatic testing at record-breaking speeds and minimal costs when compared to traditional testing. Testing on multiple devices isn't a luxury in today's environment of technical one-upmanship. Surveys show that manual testing has become less effective and more cost-prohibitive because it now requires developers to test their products on at least 134 devices just to cover 75 of the U.S. market.
Xamarins cross-platform development isn't required language for the testing, and any developer who's familiar with .NET/C# or JAVA/Objective-C can work with Xamarin. Xamarin testing supports all three platforms for constructing mobile apps that include:
- Xamarin Studio on Mac
- Xamarin Studio on Windows
- Visual Studio on Windows
Xamarins framework runs test scripts that are written in C# and Calabash in Ruby. Developers who are already using Xamarin get the added advantage of building scripts in the same language as the rest of the company's initiatives its and overall development process. Testing apps in Xamarin, however, isn’t required because even hybrid apps that mix native apps with HTML5 work at 100-percent efficiency with the Xamarin Test Cloud.
The Xamarin Test Recorder
Mobile testing -- whether manual or automated -- can be an expensive, inconclusive and laborious process, but the Xamarin Test Recorder saves time, money and reputations by capturing, identifying and recording user-interface interactions through automated testing. One of the inevitable results of today's development speed, demand for mobile apps and agile-development practices is consumer apps with bugs, incomplete testing and anticipated obsolescence. Xamarin's Test Recorder helps developers address all these quality issues quickly and inexpensively.
Using Xamarin Test Recorder
The stand-alone Xamarin test recorder keeps an intuitive record of each UI test so that developers don't waste data or duplicate their work. Developers can test everything that their apps are designed to do in three steps: recording the automated testing code, uploading the binary app to the cloud to run on more than 2,000 devices and studying the generated data. Step-by-step instructions include the following operations:
- Record the test in NUnit if writing in C# or Cucumber if using Calabash in Ruby.
- Au automation library is necessary for running the test because the testing codes are frameworks that don't interact with the app.
- Xamarin enables running the tests on Android or different iOS operating systems by providing the code that bridges the systems so that separate coding isn't necessary.
- The left side of the screen displays all the actions that the Test Recorder performed and can include everything that users can do with the app.
- The right-hand side of the screen displays the C# code of each generated test method.
- Toolbars include buttons to start, stop, replay and export the test.
- The Test Recorder Plugin is code with a library that's automatically inserted in iOS systems but isn't needed for Android.
- IPAs with the Test Recorder Plugin will be rejected by the Apple App Store, so provide a clean copy of the code for Apple App Store submissions.
Using an eCommerce Platform with Built-In Data Insights and App Analytics
Testing is just one part of the process of app development because enterprise eCommerce companies have many demands on their digital, marketing and automated processes. The best eCommerce platform offers tools for growing your apps to generate more revenue and increase customer engagement. Analytics in real-time allow administrators to troubleshoot any unforeseen problems, authorize more testing and act on data by various triggers like event completion, changes in operating system, device usage, retention stats and session behavior. The right eCommerce software complements automated app testing with the following benefits:
- Fine-tune the sales or lead generation funnel
- Measure return-on-investments to drive future app-development and marketing strategies
- Use app insights to craft marketing and social media campaigns to support further app-based strategies
- Increase app engagement with real-time sales and usage data