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R Dinakar | Posted on | 2 min Read

How to generate Synthetic Data for an effective App Testing strategy?


In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, mobile and web app automation testing has become an integral part of software development. Automation ensures that your applications function seamlessly and meet user expectations. However, a crucial component of effective automation is having access to diverse, high-quality, and realistic data for testing. When dealing with sensitive or limited datasets, obtaining real data can be challenging. And that’s where Synthetic data comes to the rescue. The use of synthetic data helps testers to rapidly scale up their testing efforts without having to wait for real data. Synthetic data also comes handy when you want to test the functionality of the application across a wide range of scenarios.

What is Synthetic Data?

Synthetic data refers to artificially generated data that closely mimics real-world data in terms of structure, distribution, and relationships. It is devoid of sensitive or confidential information and serves as an excellent substitute for real data in various scenarios, including testing and training.

Why Use Synthetic Data for Mobile and Web App Automation?

synthetic data offers a robust solution for mobile and web app automation testing. It not only addresses concerns related to data privacy, diversity, availability, scalability, and control but also enables you to conduct comprehensive and secure testing that identifies potential issues, ensures regulatory compliance, and delivers reliable and high-quality applications to your users.

Data privacy and Security

Data Privacy and Security

Compliance Assurance: Adhering to data privacy regulations is paramount in the modern digital landscape. Using real user data for automation testing can be a high-stakes endeavor, with the potential for privacy breaches. Synthetic data alleviates these concerns, as it is devoid of any sensitive or personal information.


  • Risk Mitigation: Real user data, if not properly anonymized and protected, can result in data breaches that have severe legal and reputational consequences. Synthetic data ensures that you avoid these risks altogether, safeguarding your users’ privacy and your organization’s reputation.

Data Diversity


  • Testing Realism: To ensure that your mobile and web apps perform well in a variety of scenarios, you need to test them under diverse conditions. Synthetic data empowers you to create a wide spectrum of test cases, including edge cases and rare events, which are often difficult to obtain with real data.

  • Boundary Testing: Edge cases and rare events can be especially critical in automation testing. These scenarios help identify vulnerabilities and issues that might not surface in standard testing. Synthetic data allows you to methodically test your applications in these conditions.
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Data Availability


  • Cost-Effectiveness: Acquiring real data can be expensive, both in terms of time and resources. In some cases, access to certain data may be restricted or impossible to obtain. Synthetic data provides a cost-effective solution that is readily available, enabling you to conduct comprehensive testing without significant overhead costs.


  • Reduced Dependencies: Relying on real data sources may lead to bottlenecks or delays in testing due to external dependencies. Synthetic data allows you to operate independently of these constraints, ensuring that your testing process remains agile and efficient.



  • Load Testing: Scalability is a crucial consideration, especially when simulating a large user base or extensive datasets for load testing. Synthetic data can be generated at the scale you require, allowing you to subject your mobile and web apps to realistic loads and assess their performance under stress.
  • Dynamic Scaling: Synthetic data generation can be dynamically scaled to meet your evolving testing needs. This adaptability ensures that your automation testing remains responsive to your application’s growth and changing requirements.

Data Control


  • Tailored Scenarios: Synthetic data empowers you to create specific test cases and scenarios that closely align with your application’s functionalities. You have full control over the data generation process, enabling you to design tests that are highly targeted and relevant to your app’s behavior.


  • Reproducibility: The ability to control the data generation process ensures reproducibility in your testing. You can recreate scenarios precisely to investigate and resolve issues efficiently and with precision.

How to Generate Synthetic Data for Mobile and Web App Automation:

  1. Define Data Requirements: Clearly outline your data requirements before generating synthetic data. Understand what kind of data is necessary for your automation testing scenarios, including data types, formats, and distributions.
  2. Select a Data Generation Tool: Numerous tools and libraries are available for generating synthetic data. Popular choices include Faker, Mockaroo, and Python libraries like NumPy and Faker. Choose the tool that best aligns with your technology stack and needs.
  3. Data Modeling: Create a data model representing the structure of the data you need. This model should include all the fields and relationships present in your mobile and web app’s data. Tools like JSON Schema or SQL Data Definition Language (DDL) can be beneficial for this step.

Different Techniques to Generate Synthetic Data

  • Random Data Generation: Generate random data for each field while adhering to the specified data type and distribution. This is suitable for basic automation scenarios.

  • Pattern-Based Generation: Use regular expressions or predefined patterns to generate data that conforms to specific formats (e.g., email addresses, phone numbers, or credit card numbers).

  • Statistical Generation: Utilize statistical distributions to generate data that mirrors real-world data. For instance, generate age data following a normal distribution.

  • Correlated Data: If your mobile and web app relies on data relationships, ensure that the synthetic data preserves these relationships.

Best Practices

Implementing synthetic data generation for app testing involves careful planning and execution. Here are some best practices that one must follow to ensure success and derive the most benefit from synthetic data.

  • Clearly Define Testing Goals and Data Requirements: Before generating synthetic data, establish clear testing goals. Understand the specific data requirements for your testing scenarios, including data types, structures, and distributions. Align these requirements with your testing objectives.

  • Select the Right Data Generation Tools and Libraries: Choose data generation tools and libraries that best suit your technology stack and testing needs. Popular options include Faker, Mockaroo, and Python libraries like NumPy and Faker.

  • Create a Comprehensive Data Model: Develop a robust data model that accurately represents the structure and relationships in your application’s data. This model should encompass all the fields and entities present in your app.

  • Utilize Realistic Data Generation Techniques: When generating synthetic data, use techniques that closely mimic real-world data. Consider:
    • Random data generation for basic scenarios.
    • Pattern-based generation to mimic specific data formats.
    • Statistical generation to replicate real data distributions.
    • Correlated data generation for preserving data relationships within your app.

  • Data Quality and Validation: Implement data validation and quality checks to ensure that the generated data meets the required standards for testing. This includes consistency checks and outlier detection.

  • Scale Data Generation Appropriately: Generate the right amount of data to mimic the expected usage and workloads of your application. This is essential for scalability and performance testing.

  • Integrate Synthetic Data Seamlessly: Integrate synthetic data into your testing environment, whether through databases, API endpoints, or file uploads. Ensure that the data flow in your app is effectively simulated.
  • Design Diverse Testing Scenarios: Create a variety of testing scenarios that utilize synthetic data effectively. Cover typical use cases, edge cases, and stress testing to identify potential vulnerabilities and issues.

  • Iterate and Improve: Continuously improve your synthetic data generation process based on feedback from testing results. Update and refine data generation models and techniques to make them more accurate and aligned with your app’s evolving requirements.

  • Data Privacy and Compliance: Ensure that the synthetic data you generate adheres to data privacy regulations and does not reveal sensitive information. Implement anonymization and pseudonymization techniques as necessary.

  • Data Documentation: Maintain clear and thorough documentation for the synthetic data generation process. This documentation should include data models, generation techniques, and any specific requirements to recreate or modify the synthetic data.

  • Testing Realism: Strive to make your synthetic data as realistic as possible. The more closely it mirrors real-world data, the more effective it will be in identifying potential issues and vulnerabilities in your app.

  • Collaboration Across Teams: Foster collaboration between testing, development, and data science teams. Effective communication ensures that everyone is aligned on the objectives and details of synthetic data generation.

  • Data Variation: Generate data that incorporates a wide range of variation. This is crucial for uncovering potential issues and corner cases in your application.

  • Data Retention Policies: Establish clear data retention policies for synthetic data. Define how long synthetic data should be retained, who has access, and under what circumstances it should be deleted.

  • Data Profiling: Profile your synthetic data to identify anomalies and inconsistencies. This is especially important for uncovering issues that might not be immediately apparent during testing.


Generating synthetic data for mobile and web app automation is a valuable strategy that addresses challenges related to data privacy, availability, diversity, and scalability. By following a structured approach to data modeling, generation, and validation, you can create realistic and effective synthetic data for comprehensive automation testing. Synthetic data not only ensures the functionality of your applications but also helps uncover potential issues and vulnerabilities in a controlled and secure environment. As technology advances, the role of synthetic data in mobile and web app automation will continue to be essential for delivering high-quality and reliable applications.

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R Dinakar

Dinakar is a Content Strategist at Pcloudy. He is an ardent technology explorer who loves sharing ideas in the tech domain. In his free time, you will find him engrossed in books on health & wellness, watching tech news, venturing into new places, or playing the guitar. He loves the sight of the oceans and the sound of waves on a bright sunny day.