Mobile application development

Mobile application development is the process by which application software is developed for small low-power handheld devices such as personal digital assistants, enterprise digital assistants or mobile phones. These applications are either pre-installed on phones during manufacture, or downloaded by customers from various mobile software distribution platforms.

Contents

Execution environments

Android, iOS, BlackBerry, HP webOS, Symbian OS, and Windows Mobile support typical application binaries as found on personal computers with code which executes in the native machine format of the processor (the ARM architecture is a dominant design used on many current models). Windows Mobile can also be compiled to x86 executables for debugging on a PC without a processor emulator, and also supports the Portable Executable (PE) format associated with the .NET Framework. Windows Mobile, HP webOS and iOS offer free SDKs and integrated development environments to developers. Machine language executables offer considerable performance advantages over Java.[citation needed]

Platform development environment

Each of the platforms for mobile applications also has an integrated development environment which provides tools to allow a developer to write, test and deploy applications into the target platform environment.

The following table summarises the elements in each of the development environments.

Programming language Debuggers available Emulator available Integrated development environment available Cross-platform deployment Installer packaging options Development tool cost
Adobe AIR Action Script, HTML, CSS, JavaScript Yes Yes Flash Builder, Flash Professional iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch), Android, BlackBerry The native distribution format of each platform Flash Builder, Flash Professional - Commercial licenses available Adobe AIR SDK (command line tool) - Free
Airplay SDK (Now Marmalade) C, C++ Yes Yes Visual Studio, XCode All native: Android, BlackBerry, BREW, iOS (iPhone), Maemo, Palm/webOS, Samsung bada, Symbian, Windows Mobile 6.x and desktop, OSX The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
alcheMo Java Debugger integrated in Visual Studio, Eclipse or XCode Emulator is available in corresponding IDE Visual Studio, Eclipse, XCode Android, BREW, iOS (iPhone), Windows Mobile The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
Android Java but portions of code can be in C, C++ Debugger integrated in Eclipse, standalone debugging monitor available Yes Eclipse, Project Kenai Android plugin for NetBeans Android only, because of Dalvik VM, March 2009 apk Free
Application Craft JavaScript, HTML5, CSS Yes Yes, Emulator used is Ripple Cloud Based IDE Truly cross platform: Android, iOS, Blackberry, Bada, WebOS, Symbian. Mobile, Desktop and Tablet 100% Cloud based Free and Open Source
Appcelerator JavaScript Yes, in Titanium Studio, currently in beta. Emulator is available using 3rd party tools Internal SDK Android, iPhone; BlackBerry planned The native distribution format of each platform Apache 2.0 license, commercial licenses available
appMobi HTML5 (JavaScript,CSS3,HTML5) Yes, XDK (Google Chrome App Store) Yes, In XDK Integrates with developer's preferred tool (VS, Notepad ++, VI) iOs, Android, HTML5 Web Apps, HTML5 Hybrid Apps The native distribution format of each platform No Charge
Aqua C, C++, JavaScript Yes Yes Visual Studio, XCode, Eclipse Android, BlackBerry Playbook, iOS, Palm/webOS, Samsung bada, Windows Mobile 6.x, Windows Desktop The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Basic4android Visual Basic Yes Yes Yes Android apk Commercial licenses available
BatteryTech C, C++ Yes Native Platform Emulators (iOS, Android...) Eclipse, Visual Studio, XCode Android, iOS (iPhone), Windows, OSX The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
Bedrock now webMethods Mobile Designer Java Yes Yes Eclipse Java ME, Android, BREW, BlackBerry, Nintendo DS, iOS (iPhone/iPad), Palm/webOS, Sony PSP, Samsung bada, Symbian, Windows Mobile, Windows Phone 7, Windows Desktop, OSX The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
BlackBerry Java Debugger integrated in IDE Yes Eclipse BlackBerry only, because of RIM API alx, cod Free
Blueprint XML routed through Yahoo Mobile servers and displayed in native browsers None beyond a schema check N/A, translates to web or mobile as needed N/A, any XML editor N/A, translates to web or mobile as needed Combined config upload at Yahoo with self-hosted dynamic XML Any XML editor
BREW C; the APIs are provided in C with a C++ style interface Debugger support for the native ARM target code.Can use Visual Studio to debug the x86 testing code No Emulator for the target ARM code, has a simulator for the x86 testing code Visual Studio 6.0, Visual Studio 2003 .NET, Visual Studio 2005 Compile for the specific BREW version available on the handset OTA Related dev fees typically needed for Brew App Certification - VeriSign annual fee for becoming a certified developer. Realview ARM compiler for BREW (the free GNU C/C++ is available, but with limited function and support). TRUE BREW testing fee for distributing the application.
Canappi mdsl, easy to learn programming language dedicated to mobile solutions, from which iOS, Android, ... code is generated Native Platform Debuggers (iOS, Android...) Native Platform Emulators (iOS, Android...) Eclipse, with mdsl plugin, Apple Interface Builder and Balsamiq for graphical UI design iOS, Android. Design tools like Interface Builder can be used in a cross-platform way. You create your GUI once in Interface Builder you generate code for all platform, all resolutions from a single file. Native deployment for each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Celsius Java Yes Yes Eclipse Java ME, Android, BlackBerry, iPhone, Symbian, Windows Mobile The native distribution format of each platform of a Java binary Commercial licenses available
CoStore Web-based drag-and-drop N/A Yes Web-based app builder iOS, Android, HTML5 Native deployment for each platform or web-based Free unlimited trial; commercial licenses available for deployment
Corona SDK Lua Yes Yes Xcode iOS, Android, NOOK Color Native deployment for each platform Free unlimited trial; commercial licenses available for deployment
CrossMobs C/C++ Yes Yes Visual Studio, Eclipse, Codeblocks, Xcode iOS and Android Native deployment for each platform Commercial licenses available
DragonRAD Visual drag & drop tiles Yes Uses 3rd party emulators Proprietary IDE Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile OTA deployment Free & commercial licenses available
FeedHenry HTML, CSS, JavaScript Yes Yes Studio includes full IDE and Eclipse Plug-in Apple iPhone & iPad, Android, Windows Phone 7, Blackberry, Nokia WRT. The native distribution format of each platform Free, Professional and Enterprise Plans available
Gideros Mobile Lua No Yes Proprietary IDE iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
iOS SDK Objective-C Debugger integrated in Xcode IDE Bundled with iPhone SDK, integrated with Xcode IDE Xcode iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch Only via App Store, needs review and approval by Apple Inc. Tools are free for an Intel-based Mac. Simulator testing is free, but installing on a device needs a fee for a developer signing key
iOS SDK Object Pascal Debugger integrated in Xcode IDE Included in Delphi XE2 professional or higher Embarcadero Delphi XE2 iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch Only via App Store, needs review and approval by Apple Inc. Development requires Intel-based Mac besides the IDE on Windows. Design is on Windows, Compilation and deployment has to be done on Mac. Simulator testing is free, but installing on a device needs a fee for a developer signing key
Java ME Java Yes Free emulator, Sun Java Wireless Toolkit, mpowerplayer Eclipse, LMA NetBeans Mobility Pack Yes although many VM implementations have device specific bugs necessitating separate builds Jad/Jar packaging; PRC files under Palm OS Free
JMango JMango N/A N/A JMango Flash IDE Java ME, Android, Bada, BlackBerry, iPhone, Windows Mobile 6, Windows Phone 7 The native distribution format of each platform Free
July Systems Mi™ Platform Java, HTML, Groovy, Freemarker, Java Script Yes Yes IDE – Eclipse with GUI Editor iOS, Android, Blackberry, WP7, Mobile Web, HTML5, QT Native distribution format for each platform Commercial licenses available
Kony Graphical Drag and Drop Yes Yes, utilizes Native Platform Emulators( iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7) Eclipse-based Yes. Support for full OS-native, hybrid, and wrapper applications. Includes Android, BlackBerry, iOS, Java ME, Palm/webOS, Symbian, Windows Phone 7. Mobile web browser support (WML through to device-optimized HTML5) The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
Lazarus Object Pascal Yes, can debug in IDE via ActiveSync for Windows CE Uses the emulators of the platforms Lazarus IDE, including integrated GUI designer and debugger Compiled language available for Windows CE, Linux-based devices, SymbianOS port in development The native distribution format of each platform Free
Macromedia Flash Lite ActionScript Yes Bundled with IDE Macromedia Flash MX2004/8, Eclipse Yes SIS / CAB deployment or OTA/IR/Bluetooth SWF files Varies, free but limited with MTASC
Microbrowser based XHTML (WAP 2.0), WML (WAP 1.2) Yes Many Many Basic page rendering with per page customizations for different browsers N/A Free
Meme IDE Memescript easy to learn programming language Validation is provided in the problems view Yes, Android emulator can be integrated Eclipse RCP Android, Windows Mobile The native distribution format if each platform Free for development
MobiAccess CoBaBe, easy to learn and dedicated to mobile solutions. Six platform in one language. Very similar to .net No Yes, only Windows (Apple upcoming) MobiAccess - proprietary IDE, internal SDK iOS (iPhone, iPad,), Android, BlackBerry, WP7, Windows Mobile, PDA, Qt (Linux, Symbian) The Native Distribution format for all platforms Free and Commercial licenses available
MobiFlex Visual drag & drop tiles N/A N/A, runs on phone in seconds Web Portal, comes with data management add-ins Android, iPhone N/A Free for development only
MobileNationHQ Visual paradigm/javascript N/A N/A instant cloud-based deployment Integrated SaaS environment Android, iPhone N/A Free and Commercial licenses available
Moscrif JavaScript N/A Bundled with Moscrif SDK Internal SDK (Mono based) All native: Android, iOS (iPhone), Samsung bada, Symbian, Windows Mobile The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Mono for Android C# Yes Yes Visual Studio 2005 and MonoDevelop Android The native distribution format of the platform
MonoTouch C# Yes Yes Visual Studio 2005 and MonoDevelop iOS The native distribution format of the platform
MoSync C, C++, Lua, HTML5 , CSS, JavaScript Yes Yes Eclipse, Visual Studio 2005 and later, MoBuild w/ text editors Android, Java ME, Moblin, iOS (iPhone), Smartphone 2003, Symbian, Windows Mobile (Pocket PC), Blackberry (experimental) SIS, CAB, JAD, JAR, APK, OTA deployment Free, GPL 2.0, Free Indie Subscription; commercial subscription available
NeoMAD Java Yes Uses 3rd party emulators Eclipse and Netbeans plugin Java ME, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, iOS (iPhone) and Samsung bada coming soon The native distribution format of each platform Commercial licenses available
.NET Compact Framework C#, VB.NET, Basic4ppc Yes Free emulator, source code available, also bundled with IDE Visual Studio 2008, 2005, 2003, Basic4ppc IDE Windows Mobile, Windows CE, Symbian-based devices via third party tools OTA deployment, CAB files, ActiveSync Most tools free, but commercial editions of Visual Studio needed for visual designers
NS BASIC/App Studio Visual Basic Yes No, Test in Chrome or Safari Browser Proprietary IDE iPhone, iPad, iPad Touch, Android 2.1+ Java Web App or native deployment using Phonegap Evaluation Version & Commercial Licenses available
OpenPlug ActionScript, XML Yes Yes OpenPlug ELIPS plugin for Adobe Flash Builder Android, iOS (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch), Symbian, Windows Mobile The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Palm OS C, C++, Pascal Yes OS 1.0 - 4.1: Free Emulator provided by PalmSource (Access); OS 5.0: - 5.4 Device-specific Simulators provided by Palm (palmOne) Palm OS Development System (Eclipse), CodeWarrior, PocketStudio, HB++, Satellite Forms Palm OS handhelds, or Windows Mobile with StyleTap emulator PRC files, PalmSource Installer (.psi) Free (POSE or GCC for Palm OS), or commercial (CodeWarrior), or various commercial rapid-development frameworks
Particle SDK Java, ActionScript Yes Yes Eclipse plugin with GUI editor Android, BlackBerry, iOS, webOS, and Windows Phone 7 mobile devices plus Flash, HTML5 web apps The native distribution format of each platform Currently in free beta. Commercial license will be available.
PhoneGap HTML, CSS, JavaScript Yes No, 3rd party tools No, 3rd party tools iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Symbian, Palm The native distribution format of each platform MIT license
Python Python Yes Add-on to Nokia Emulator Several, including plugins for Eclipse Interpreted language available natively only on Nokia Series60 (and desktops) though ports exist to other mobile platforms, including PalmOS Sis deployment with py2sis or can use Python Runtime Free
Qt SDK C++,QML Yes Yes Qt Creator Symbian platform, Maemo, MeeGo, Linux, Windows, Mac OS X The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Resco MobileForms Toolkit C# Yes Yes Visual Studio Windows Mobile (Pocket PC), Windows CE, Android, iOS, Smartphone The native distribution format of each platform Free & commercial licenses available
Rhomobile Ruby with HTML interface features compiled through an interpreter into native applications. Yes N/A, applications can run in Win32 runner, or in device emulators for supported platforms. xCode or Eclipse, on-demand RhoHub version includes full IDE Yes, supports iOS (incl. 3.0) on iPhone and iPad, Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional, Mobile Windows 6.0 Standard, BlackBerry 4.6, 4.7, 5.0, 6.0 (BlackBerry 4.2 and 4.5 supported but database access is very slow on these devices), Symbian and Android 1.6 and higher OTA deployment, iOS through App store, .SIS, .CAB, .APK, .COD Rhodes is free and open source under the MIT License, RhoSync is under GPL or commercial, Commercial support available. Subscription for RhoHub
Smartface Platform Drag-and-drop tools and action editing No, not needed Yes Smartface Designer Yes: Android, BlackBerry, J2ME, Symbian S60 The native distribution format of each platform Community licenses available
Symbian C++ Yes Free Emulator Many choices Compile per target SIS deployment Commercial and free tools available
TotalCross Java Yes Yes Eclipse, TKN Mobile Studio for TotalCross Android, BlackBerry, iOS (iPhone, iPad), Palm OS, Windows Mobile. Windows Phone 7, Symbian planned The native distribution format of each platform (cab, jad, apk, pdb/prc, deb) SDK is open source and free for desktop development. VM for target devices must be licensed
WebORB Integration Server C#,VB.NET, Java, PHP, ActionScript, JavaScript, Objective-C, XML Yes Uses emulator for corresponding mobile SDKs Works with Eclipse, Visual Studio, intelliJ IDEA and Amethyst IDE Android, iOS (iPhone/iPad), BlackBerry Playbook, Windows Phone7 The native distribution format of each platform Free development licenses; Free and Commercial deployment licenses
webOS JavaScript, CSS, HTML, C and C++ through the PDK Yes Free emulator Eclipse webOS, Palm only OTA deployment, webOS through App store, Web URL, Precentral, .ipk Free
WinDev Mobile WLanguage Yes Yes WinDev Mobile, Android DSK Android, Windows Mobile OTA deployment, apk, CAB files, ActiveSync Commercial licenses available
Windows Mobile C, C++ Yes Free emulator (source code available), also bundled with IDE Visual Studio 2010, 2008, 2005, eMbedded VC++ (free), Satellite Forms Windows Mobile, Windows FU, Windows CE OTA deployment, CAB files, ActiveSync Free command-line tools or eMbedded VC++, or Visual Studio (Standard edition or better)
Windows Phone C# Yes Free emulator, also bundled with IDE Visual Studio 2010 Windows Phone OTA deployment, XAP files
Worklight Choice of standard HTML5, CSS and JavaScript, native languages or a combination of both Yes Bundled with the IDE as well as device SDK integration Eclipse-based plug-in Yes, supports Android, BlackBerry, iOS and Windows Phone 7, as well as modern mobile browsers for web apps The native distribution format of each platform Downloadable free evaluation version, commercial licenses available
Fivespark Web-based point and click N/A Preview in desktop browser Web-based app builder Android, BlackBerry, iOS and Windows Phone 7 plus other modern mobile browsers HTML5 OTA Free for development
Tiggr - Mobile Apps Builder Web-based, visual editor, HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, jQuery Mobile, PhoneGap Yes, in special debug window No need, test right in browser or device Web-based, can also export to Eclipse or Maven project Mobile Web (HTML/JS/CSS), iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7 The native distribution format of each platform or mobile Web (HTML/JS/CSS) In free beta, subscription will be available in the future

Mobile Application Testing

Definition

"Testing is the process of executing a program with the intent of finding errors".[1] Mobile application testing involves testing of mobile applications across various platforms.It is a challenging process.

Need For Mobile Application Testing

Mobile Application Testing is a one of the most important part of mobile application development life cycle and the possibility of errors in the coding can not be ignored. The mobile applications today deliver complex functionalities on platforms that have limited resource for computing.So,Testing needs to keep up: in pursuit of quality. The testing methods which are used for web based and desktop based applications are not sufficient to meet the testing needs of mobile application.

Types of testing supported

Following areas are crucial and differ from desktop or regular web applications:[3][4]

1. User Interface Testing :
User Interface of mobile devices is unique consisting of smaller screens that can be touchscreens and soft keyboards with navigation methods like hard keys and trackballs and track wheel.
2. External Factors Testing :
Testing the impact of external factors like various network connections,SD card interactions,interrupts and miscellaneous device settings is important.Network connections may of type 2G,3G,Wi-ficonnection,network through USB connection.It is important to test application's behavior in presence and absence of SD card.Application should give indication if SD card is missing.Interrupts like phone calls and miscellaneous device settings must also be taken into consideration.Other interrupts are text messages,notifications like low battery,social media notifications(Facebook,Twitter),alarm clock,calender events.
3. Stress testing|Stress Testing :
Mobile applications have resource constraints compared to desktop applications like low device memory and power available. Efficient use of these resources becomes important.
Stress testing is of utmost important to uncover possible exceptions,deadlocks,hangs which might not get detected during functional and UI testing.
4. Security Testing :
It is important to test mobile web application security,security of sensitive data and behavior of application under various device permissions.Some issues related with security which differ from desktop applications at device level are:
  • Most of the mobile devices have a concept of one user.There is no switching between users,different user permissions,different user profiles.
  • configuring password or unlock pattern is up to user.
  • There is no guarantee that the user will configure their Wi-Fi to be secure.So,communication of any sensitive data should be done over SSL/TLS.
  • The essential encryption should be done at application level because device won't handle it.
Application footprint testing should be done.It comprises of making hash files of device file structure with fingerprint analysis using tools like md5deep and ExamDiff.
The permission configuration of devices should also be taken into considerations while designing test cases.It should ensure that the application gets access to required device areas and if it doesn't then application must notify user to set permissions properly.
5. Compatibility Testing :
It ensures that the application works as intended with the selected device, OS , screen size, display and internal hardware. Interoperability Testing is a superset of compatibility testing and integration testing.
6. Power consumption Testing :
Mobile applications may cause battery drainage.Device settings also can be responsible for drainage of battery life.It makes difficult to determine if the mobile application or the settings are the cause.
For instance, Nokia Energy profiler is a stand-alone test and measurement application which enables to monitor the battery consumption on target device.
7. Automated Testing :
It is done using an emulator and a performance testing tool.
For instance, eggPlant is a QA automation and software testing product.

Testing using Emulators

The application is first tested within the development environment using emulators.Later it is subjected to field testing. Emulators provide inexpensive way to test the applications on mobile phones to which we may not have physical access. Here is a list of free tools for testing application across the most popular mobile operating systems.

  • Google Android Emulator[5]

It is Android Emulator which is patched to run on a Windows PC as a standalone app without having to download and install the complete and complex Android SDK, and can be even installed and Android compatible apps can be tested on it.

  • Official Android SDK Emulator[6]

It includes a mobile device emulator which mimics all of the hardware and software features of a typical mobile device (without the calls).

MobiOne Developer is a mobile Web IDE for Windows that helps developers to code, test, debug, package and deploy mobile Web applications to devices such as iPhone, Blackberry, Android, and the Palm Pre.

  • TestiPhone[8]

It is a web browser based simulator for quickly testing iPhone web applications. This tool has been tested and works using Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 2 and Safari 3.

It gives a pixel-accurate web browsing environment and it is powered by Safari.It can be used while developing web sites for the iPhone. It's the perfect 320 by 480-pixel canvas for iPhone development.It is not an iPhone simulator but instead is designed for web developers who want to create 320 by 480 (or 480 by 320) websites for use with iPhone.iPhoney will only run on Mac OS X 10.4.7 or later.

  • BlackBerry Simulator[10]

There are a variety of official BlackBerry simulators available to emulate the functionality of actual BlackBerry products. With any of the BlackBerry device simulators, we can test how the BlackBerry device software, screen, keyboard and trackwheel will work with application.

Weighted Device Platform Matrix Method

End-to-end testing mimics real-world use of the application in a complete environment. For example, it may include interacting with a database, a network, hardware, or other applications.[11] If the application is meant to run with multiple platforms, i.e. on multiple devices or Operating System (OS) versions, or with other hardware and software configurations, there may be too many platform combinations to test exhaustively. In such situations, a weighted matrix of target platforms can make the number of test combinations manageable. Such target platform matrices are built as follows:

  1. Define the important platform parameters.
    For example, an application targeting multiple devices and multiple OS versions (or other software configurations) would have each as a platform matrix parameter.
  2. Arrange the platform parameters with independently variable parameters on different matrix dimensions.
    For example, hardware models may be on the vertical dimension and OS versions along the horizontal dimension, as in the table below.
  3. Along each matrix dimension, weight the relative importance of each platform parameter.
    For example, the importance of testing a particular device model may be may be based on its anticipated sales.
  4. Weight each platform combination in the matrix using a function of the combined importance parameters.
    For example, multiply the relative importance as in the table below to determine the platform weight. The resulting weight indicates the degree of end-to-end test coverage required.[12]
Device/OS Relative Importance Windows CE Windows mobile vs 2003 Windows mobile vs 2005 Palm OS Symbian OS
Relative Importance 5 4 9 6 4
Symbol PPT 8800 7 35 42 63 N/A N/A
HP iPAQ 2100 series 9 45 54 81 N/A N/A
Tungsten E2 5 N/A N/A N/A 30 20
Tungsten T5 6 N/A N/A N/A 36 24
HP iPAQ 1900 series 7 35 42 63 N/A N/A
High Importance
Medium Importance
Low Importance
Combination not available

Tools

  • FoneMonkey: It is a free Mobile Application Testing tool for iPhone applications[13]
  • Robotium : This is an automation tool for Android Mobile Application[14]
  • Sikuli: It is a visual technology to automate and test graphical user interfaces (GUI) using images.
  • Deviceanywhere: This is an automation tool for Mobile Application across All Platforms, all Devices.[15]
  • MITE : A Mobile content testing and validation tool for Mobile Web application.[16]

Challenges

1) Possibility of field failures:
With testing using simulators and emulators,even if we can simulate some aspects of the application, the handset for example, we can’t be sure what happens when we try it over a real wireless network. This results in many field failures.[17]
2) Emerging mobile technologies:
Now mobile devices are of different screen sizes.They have various input methods like QWERTY, touch, normal.They also differ in platforms.For example, Android from Google Inc., Blackberry OS from RIM,iOS from Apple Inc.,Symbian OS from Symbian Foundation, BREW from Qualcomm are present.Testing on every device is not possible. Inconsistency in terms of functionality might be there while deploying the application across various devices and platforms.[17]
3) Automation not easy:
Automation saves a lot of time by enabling the execution of repetitive tests with the help of computers. In the case of mobile applications, it is difficult to automate even the mundane tests due to the inherent constraints of hardware like less memory and poor processing power on which these applications execute. The tests have to be executed manually. This demands more manual testing resource and time. To minimize the number of tests,test case prioritization based on risk becomes increasingly important.[17]

Keys to successful testing

  • One should understand the network landscape and device landscape.After that one should find out bottlenecks.
  • The application must be tested in uncontrolled real-world test conditions.This is also called Field testing.It is must for multi-tier applications.
  • One should selecting the appropriate automation test tool.The decision can be made based on:
  1. One tool that supports all desired platforms.
  2. The tool that supports testing for various screen types, resolutions, and input mechanisms — such as touchpad and keypad.
  3. The tool should be connected to the external system to carry out end-to-end testing.
  • Weighted Device Platform Matrix method is useful where the number of test cases is huge.It can be used to optimize them.
  • End-to-end functional flow of the application across all possible platforms is also important.
  • Even if, it is possible to have performance testing, GUI testing, and compatibility testing on actual devices, they should also be tested on actual devices.
  • Conditions like wireless traffic and user load which arise on actual device should be taken into consideration while measuring performance.[12]

In general, it is a good idea to use some combination of real device and emulator testing, as recommended in the table below:[3]

Type of testing Using devices Using emulators Automated testing
Unit Testing No Yes No
Integration Testing No Yes No
System Testing Yes No No
Regression Testing Yes No Yes
Compatibility Testing Yes No Yes
GUI Testing Yes No No
Performance Testing Yes No Yes
Security Testing Yes No Yes
Synchronization Testing Yes No No

Application stores

Several initiatives exist both from mobile vendor and mobile operators around the world. Application developers can propose and publish their applications on the stores, being rewarded by a revenue sharing of the selling price. Most famous is Apple's App Store, where only approved applications may be distributed and run on iOS devices (otherwise known as a walled garden). HP / Palm, Inc have also created the Palm App Catalog where HP / Palm, Inc webOS device users can download applications directly from the device or send a link to the application via a unique web distribution method. Recently, mobile operators such as Telefonica Group and Telecom Italia have launched cross-platform application stores for their subscribers.

Patents

There are numerous patent applications pending for new mobile phone apps. Most of these are in the technological fields of Business methods, Database management, Data transfer and Operator interface.[18]

Patent Enforcement

On May 31, 2011, Lodsys asserted two of its four patents: U.S. Patent No. 7,620,565 ("the '565 patent") on a "customer-based design module" and U.S. Patent No. 7,222,078 ("the '078 patent") on "Methods and Systems for Gathering Information from Units of a Commodity Across a Network." against the following app developers:[19]

  • Combay
  • Iconfactory
  • Illusion Labs
  • Shovelmate
  • Quickoffice
  • Richard Shinderman of Brooklyn, New York
  • Wulven Games of Hanoi, Vietnam

See also

References


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