Introduction

Selenium is the name that comes on top of our minds whenever we talk about automation testing. It has been the most preferred automation testing tool, loved by testers and developers worldwide. There are many automation testing tools available in the market, then why choose Selenium?Let’s understand some basics before moving ahead with the possible reasons for choosing Selenium WebDriver for automation testing.

Background

Selenium was developed in 2004 by a global software company called Thoughtworks for internal purposes to automate testing of web applications. In the earlier days, testers worldwide used Selenium Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that only worked with Firefox. Due to this downside, Selenium IDE was improvised to become Selenium RC that supported automated testing on multiple browsers. And then Selenium Webdriver came in with many advanced features and functions making it an irresistible tool for automated testing.

What is Selenium?


Selenium does not need an introduction. It is the most popular cross-browser automation testing platform among testers around the world. We all know that it is an open-source automation testing tool for automating tests on different web browsers. It comes with a suite of tools that cater to different organizational needs, namely, Selenium RC, Selenium IDE, Selenium Grid, Selenium WebDriver. Out of these, Selenium Grid and WebDriver are merged into one.

What is Selenium WebDriver?

It is a suite containing multiple APIs that developers use to perform testing on web applications. Today, websites come with robust features and organizations are also interested in creating mobile-friendly websites for the advantage of their users. Selenium RC did not support automated testing of web applications on different device environments which gradually resulted in its downfall. This disadvantage gave birth to Selenium Webdriver automation testing to address such issues. It supports many features that the older versions of Selenium did not. It is not only compatible with Desktop but also with Android and iOS. With the help of Selenium Webdriver automation testing, one can test dynamic websites that keep changing their content frequently. It simulates user interaction with the web page. It comes with a user-friendly Application Programming Interface and is compatible with frameworks like JUNIT to ease Selenium Automation Testing.

Why Choose Selenium WebDriver as for Automation Testing?

Let’s look at some of the benefits of Selenium WebDriver Automation testing below:

  • Open Source

    One of the key advantages of the Selenium Web driver is that it is open-source and available to the public free of cost. Anyone can use the Selenium open source framework to perform automation testing on multiple web browsers, which is why it is popular among beginners. Also the Selenium community is a powerful support system for the testers and developers who need help performing Selenium WebDriver Automation testing immaculately. The community constantly works on making the tool better and resolves any user queries and other issues. Being open-source, it allows customizing the code structure for enhancing functionalities of various features and classes.

  • Supports multiple browsers

    Selenium Webdriver is compatible with all the popular browsers used worldwide, like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, IE, Opera, Yandex, Edge, etc. It does not require rewriting the scripts for every browser; one script works for all the browsers. While performing cross-browser testing of a website, Selenium WebDriver always brings forth a reliable automated solution.
  • Supports Different Operating Systems

    People prefer working on different operating systems, so it becomes essential that your automation tool supports them all. Operating systems like MacOS, Linux, Unix, Windows work well with Selenium. The scripts created on Selenium WebDriver are compatible with different OS. It is easier for testers and developers to execute Selenium test suite on one platform. For example, Windows can run the same test on any other OS, like Mac or Linux. Because of this feature, developers and testers can focus on writing scripts rather than worrying about the platform on which they will run.

  • Multiple Language Support System

    The key benefit that Selenium WebDriver automation testing offers is multi-lingual support. Selenium WebDriver supports most programming languages like Python, PHP, Ruby, Java, C#, JavaScript, Perl, etc. that testers use to perform automation testing. Although Selenium has a customized script language, it offers language bindings to every essential language. Interestingly, if you write your script in any of the above languages, Selenium converts it into a Selenium compatible code. So, understanding only Selenium-compatible languages would not haunt anymore.

  • Supports multiple Frameworks

    For source code compilation, Selenium WebDriver can easily integrate with ANT or Maven framework. For easing application testing with Selenium WebDriver and generating reports, it integrates well with TestNG and JUnit. For cloud-grid, cross-browser testing, pCloudy is the best option. For image-based testing, Selenium integrates well with tools like Sikuli. Also, for automatic CI/CD build and integration, it integrates perfectly with Jenkins, Docker.
  • Supports testing across devices

    Selenium WebDriver is also known for supporting cross-device automation testing and solving cross-device testing issues. You can write automated test cases for testing multiple devices like iPhone, Android, Windows devices, etc.
  • Community Support

    Selenium users have a strong backing from its online community that diligently works on improving the product, leading to releasing regular updates and upgrades to the product. The online communities also help each other in solving user queries and other issues. It is a great platform to constantly improve your learning curve, brainstorm, and get help from others about any roadblocks or issues.
  • Easy Implementation


    Selenium WebDriver is very easy to implement. Its user-friendliness helps create and execute scripts effectively. Users script their versions of extensions which enable them to develop customized actions that are further customizable at the advanced levels. Undoubtedly, it has the support of a strong community that always supports it at the time of need.
  • Reusability

    Selenium provides reusable automation test suites executed across multiple browsers and OS. Selenium WebDriver is considered for performing browser compatibility testing. It covers all the aspects of functionality testing, making it easier for testers to run multiple testing scenarios, widening the scope of testing.
  • Simulates Mouse and Keyboard actions

Selenium WebDriver is capable of simulating real user situations using mouse/keyboard events. When these events need to be executed, Advanced User Interactions consisting of action classes are required. There are many mouse events like mouse keypress, drag and drop, click and hold, multiple selections, etc., that Selenium Webdriver can automate.

  • No Server start is required

    Selenium WebDriver does not require starting the server before performing testing. Instead, the code directly interacts with the browser via HTTP requests.
  • Advanced Browser Interactions

    Selenium WebDriver also simulates advanced browser interactions, for example, clicking on arrows for going back and forth in the browser. This capability of WebDriver helps in the case of banking and money transfer apps that do not store cache and cookies. No other open-source tool provides such crucial functionality for automated testing.

Other benefits

  • Simple Commands – Follows easy-to-implement commands
  • Reduces Test Execution Time – WebDriver helps reduce test execution time. Unlike Selenium RC, it directly interacts with the browser without needing any intermediate server.
  • Easy Web Element Implementation– Helps testers implement web elements in the test automation suite with the help of locators at ease
  • Handles Dynamic Web elements– Handles Dynamic Web elements like alerts, dropdowns, file upload, etc., easily by locating them using methods like Contains(), Absolute XPath(), and StartsWith().

Conclusion:

After discussing what Selenium WebDriver is, its benefits, and its comparison to Selenium RC and IDE, we understand that Selenium WebDriver is one of the powerful components of the Selenium Automation testing suite. When it comes to choosing the best tool for your automation testing needs, it becomes extremely tough. That is where pCloudy comes in for the rescue. It provides businesses with a scalable cloud-based cross-browser testing solution that allows them to execute their Selenium tests through their Selenium Grid. The User can perform testing for browser compatibility for their app across thousands of browsers using pCloudy’s Testing Platform. It offers all the features that are needed to test your application across different OS and devices and helps reduce infrastructure cost by removing the need for installing any additional virtual machines.

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