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Mobile Application Testing at a Glance – Part 1

by on Sep 05, 2011 in Mobile Applications, Quality Assurance, Web Development

The mobile application testing space is complex. The mobile is a significant percentage of primary access to the internet. So we thought it deserves more than a single post – here is the first one.

Why do we need Mobile application testing ?

Consider some statistics:

  • 5.3 billion1,2 is the number estimated by the International Telecommunication Union as the total number of mobile subscriptions in the world by the end of 2010. Growth being led by India and China.
  • Smart phone sales accounted for about 22% of total mobile sales in 20101,4,5
  • 25% of all smart phone users do most of their online browsing on their phone6.
  • Over 300,000 mobile applications were developed between 2007-20101.
  • Payments by mobile ‘m-payments’, estimated to be about US$ 240 Billion in 20111.

Next we see how the following graphic illustrates that a smart phone user’s maximum time is spent on his Applications. We assume a similar time distribution holds true across other phones.

Pie chart of Android mobile usage

Again, consider the following chart6 for both feature as well as smart phone user. Note feature phone sales still outnumber smart phone sales by 4:1, not to count the existing ownership.

We observe that 44% of cell phone owners use their phones to access the internet. 35% to play games. And similar.

How Americans use their cell phones

Next, we shall briefly have a look at some image samples of mobile applications and games on mobile phones and how sometimes the applications give us an error.

And then we shall have a look at some manufacturer statistics wrt mobile applications.

Mobile Application

Mobile app image

Mobile Game

Mobile Gaming

Error Example

Android Error Reporting

Another Game example

mobile games handy spiele screenshot rally master pro

Android Error Reporting

Consider the top smartphone sales statistics for 20101:

smartphone sales statistics

Nokia has a huge dominance, maybe to our surprise, given the popularity of iPhones and Blackberries in this part of the world.

Similarly consider how the dominant OS platforms in the above smartphones are expected to grow between 2009 -20151.

Operating systems market share

What we can observe is that Android & Windows Mobile are expected to gain at the cost of Symbian.

To summarise, there is clearly a need for a coherent strategy to test the various applications being put out in such a huge marketplace. We propose to show how to go about doing that in part 2 of our series. Do read.

Thanks for reading and we’ll welcome your feedback.

List of Reference sites

  1. http://mobithinking.com/mobile-marketing-tools/latest-mobile-stats
  2. http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/ict/statistics/at_glance/KeyTelecom.html
  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_mobile_phones_in_use
  4. http://www.strategyanalytics.com/default.aspx?mod=pressreleaseviewer&a0=5000
  5. http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Smartphones/Summary.aspx

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