Future-Proof Your Test Lab: Take the Guesswork Out Of Your Application Testing Strategy

Future-Proof Your Test Lab: Take the Guesswork Out Of Your Application Testing Strategy

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Plan your digital application testing around expected market changes

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, or if you work in DevOps, you’ve probably already spent a fair amount of time considering which devices you need in your lab. Testing on the right platforms is key to ensuring a great experience for your users. However, in the scramble to make sure your lab is up to date today, you might overlook another critical component of a successful testing strategy: planning. Planning for future changes in the market makes the difference between success today and ongoing success.

Mobile and web markets are driven by recurring patterns in both platform/OS release schedules and customer adoption of these platforms. Here are a few examples of release patterns:

In the mobile space

  • Apple typically announces a major iOS release in June for release in September
  • iOS mobile updates occur monthly – historically, these releases are 80% bugfixes and 20% feature introductions
  • Google’s OS Dev Preview for a new major Android release happens each March

Minor updates to Android  do not follow a set schedule – therefore, constant scanning of sites such as https://www.gsmarena.com and https://www.androidcentral.com can provide some early warning of coming changes.

In desktop browsers

  • Chrome and Firefox browsers are updated monthly
  • Safari and Edge receive 1 or 2 major updates per year

…and customer adoption patterns:

For mobile

  • When a new major Android OS is introduced, it triggers the non-Pixel vendors to update their devices to the previous major release; hence, adoption of Android “Latest -1” grows.
  • Apple pushes iOS releases to devices automatically, encouraging rapid adoption-  this increases the urgency of application testing for the new OS

Desktop browsers

  • Chrome and Firefox monthly releases are automatically updated on the users’ desktops, therefore forcing high adoption rates

Use Perfecto’s market calendars to guide your test lab updates

Armed with an awareness of these patterns in market changes, developers, testers and lab managers can be proactive, setting trigger points to update their labs as well as their project planning.  Here are some of the key market-change points:

  • March is an important month in the mobile space with its post-MWC product launches
  • June is when Google releases its next major OS version
  • June is the initial major-iOS-release developer preview
  • September is the when Apple releases its new major iOS version
  • Monthly updates to Chrome and Firefox major and beta-OS versions.

Factors reference guide helps you plan for your future cross-platform testing needs by keeping track of these market patterns and giving you the advance notice you need to avoid project-planning headaches.

Use Perfecto’s calendars to align your entire lab configuration, and project plans for 2018 for your mobile and web applications.

The Bottom Line

In this article, we have taken a look at the importance of understanding mobile and web market patterns and the benefits of planning according to these patterns.  We also highlighted the importance of being proactive and continuous planning in order to accommodate market changes and mitigate UX risks.  Perfecto’s Factors reference guide offers easy-to-use, pattern-based market calendars for both mobile and web;  we track upcoming changes in the market so you can focus on your mobile and web application testing.  

Download your copy of Factors reference guide now and future-proof your test lab!


About the Author:

Eran Kinsbruner is the Chief Evangelist at Perfecto and Author of the Digital Quality Handbook and Continuous Testing for DevOps Professionals books. He is formerly the CTO for mobile testing and Texas Instruments project manager at Matrix, Eran has been in testing since 1999 with experience that includes managing teams at ADT, Sun Microsystems, General Electric, and NeuStar. You can find Eran on Facebook, Twitter @ek121268, LinkedIn, and on his professional continuous testing blog at http://continuoustesting.blog/.

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