7 things you didn’t know about mobile device testing farms

7 things you didn’t know about mobile device testing farms

At least once in our lives, we have been to family or friend dinners with tasteless dishes. The host of the party just thought it would be nice to cook this. However, sometimes the dish is generally inedible. Why? Because the chef didn’t check it properly. A similar situation is with testing on real devices. No matter how many autotests you write. In any case, you need to make sure that the app works properly on the devices your target audience uses. Let’s figure out how mobile device farms help you test your application.

What is a mobile device farm? 

Spoiler: this is not about agriculture. You can’t reproduce some bugs in your testing environment. Sometimes you need access to a specific phone model and version of the operating system installed on it. So it makes sense to think about how to check the application on the devices used by the target audience. The solution is a mobile device farm.

A mobile device farm is a virtual or real set of mobile devices. The farm provides an opportunity to test the application on various combinations of device models. You can create and maintain your device farm, or you can rent devices when you need them. The second option is a more rational decision because you pay just for the time you use the device. In addition, you don’t need to spend the project budget on maintaining the device farm. You can try Zebrunner Device Farm for free to understand how it works. With this solution you can run tests on iOS and Android smartphones and tablets through the cloud or on-premise. Get access to multithreaded test execution, and ensure the highest quality of your software. 

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Now, let’s explore the mobile device farm benefits.

1. Reproducing mobile app bugs 

Suppose, your users with a Google Pixel 5a smartphone complain that the application works with glitches. This bug wasn’t found either during manual testing or during autotests. This smartphone model is in the top-5 in sales in the US in 2023. Thus, your software must work on it, otherwise, you will lose part of the auditory. You have to use the same device to reproduce this error and identify and fix its root causes. The easiest way to do this is via the device farm. 

2. Detect bugs before deployment

A key advantage of mobile device farms is that they allow you to avoid critical bugs in production. On real devices, you can test both manually and run autotests. You inbuild testing on real devices in the QA workflow, identifying and resolving the detected errors. Only after you can release the application to the market.

3. Application quality insurance

Without the device farm, you don’t know how your application works in real-life conditions. You can only check how your software operates using smartphones that your team members use. This is not enough. For comparison, when you use device farm possibilities, you know that the software works properly on all devices used by the target audience of your product.

The mobile device farm is insurance against product launch failures. You check everything that can be checked. You fix all the bugs and glitches. You test every possible use case for the app. Furthermore, the device farm solution could be delivered in combo with automated reporting. This helps you speed up the testing process and monitor product success. Thus, your product enters the market with the highest quality.

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4. Increasing testing coverage

Mobile device farms provide devices of different brands and different models. You can test your app on the latest versions of popular smartphones and old devices. So you make sure that the software works correctly on different combinations of operating systems and firmware of specific devices. Moreover, you will know for sure and will be able to fix all possible bugs related to screen size and resolution if necessary.

5. Remote real device testing 

By renting the power of a mobile device farm, you get unlimited remote access to the devices you need. Your test team members can be located anywhere in the world. This is convenient nowadays when many people prefer to work remotely. Distant access is an advantage provided by mobile device farms. You get the ability to run tests remotely 24/7.

6. Data security

Some companies cannot test the application through the cloud, even if the threat of data leakage is minimal. For such cases, hosting a device farm infrastructure in your office is an option. This way you know exactly, that your data hasn’t left your servers. 

7. Real end-user conditions simulation

Emulators and simulators make it possible to check how correctly an application displays on different screen sizes with different resolutions. You can also verify how the software displays and operates on a specific device emulator or simulator. However, if you need to understand how an application interacts with a device at various levels, you cannot do without real devices.

Let’s say you want to check if an app is critically affecting your battery. You can’t do it with emulators & simulators. The same applies to situations where you need to test how the application functions on an incoming call or when switching to another application.


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Shankar is a tech blogger who occasionally enjoys penning historical fiction. With over a thousand articles written on tech, business, finance, marketing, mobile, social media, cloud storage, software, and general topics, he has been creating material for the past eight years.