| Posted on | 2 min Read

Flutter has been creating waves in the app development space since its launch. The reason is simple, it solves the problem of creating two different codebases for a single app to run on Android and iOS devices. Some experts say that Flutter which was launched by Google is to counter React Native which is used by Facebook. Nevertheless, this is a much-needed relief for enterprises as Flutter will help them save a lot of their time and resources. So let’s first understand what is Flutter.

What is Flutter

Flutter is an opensource mobile UI framework that can create Android and iOS apps from a single codebase. The Flutter framework includes the Flutter engine, Dart platform, the Foundation library, and design-specific widgets. Flutter apps are written in Dart programming language and runs on dart virtual machine.

How to Create a Flutter App

Before we start the process of app development it is important to know that there are two types of widgets, stateless and stateful. A stateless widget describes part of the UI by building a structure of other widgets that describe the UI more definitive. Stateful widgets are the widgets that can change their state multiple times and can be redrawn on to the screen any number of times while the app is in action.
 
To create a Flutter app you need to install Flutter SDK and other tools required to support the framework. We will create the app in Intelli J IDE and for that, you need to install two plugins. The first one is Dart and the second plugin is Flutter. You can install the plugins by clicking on File in the menu bar of the IDE and then click on Settings.
 
1

Then you need to create a new project and you will get a basic code layout to start with your app development. In the first line, we have the main method where we will enable the flutter driver extension and there is a run app method with MyApp class instance, to run the app.
 
Flutter stateless

In this sample code, we have used the title as the stateless widget and we have set the title as the key and for the home screen, we are using one more instance which is MyStatefulWidget(). So in this class, we have a small piece of code, where we have set values for elements like appBar, background color, and in the body, we have placed a floating action button for a counter.
 
flutter statefull

After adding the code you can run the program and you will be able to see the changed state of the counter with every click on the action button.
 
Flutter automation

Appium Flutter Driver

Appium Flutter driver is a test automation tool for flutter apps on multiple platforms. It is a part of the Appium mobile test automation tool. But how does the Appium Flutter driver work? It uses webSocket communication to carry WDIO script to instantiate the flutter driver and the request will be sent to the particular application. Then the AUT will send the response to the script through the Appium Flutter driver.

Appium Flutter driver
Appium Flutter driver

You can also build Appium in your machine through the source code. Once you have cloned the source code, run npm install then npm run built and type a command node to start the Appium server. You can download the package from GitHub. The package contains Appium Flutter Driver and Appium Flutter Finder. You can clone the sample project to get the WDIO code.
 
Flutter sample

In the terminal, you can see that to automate flutter application we have used Flutter as an automation name for both Android and iOS apps. You can see that port is 4723 and in the capabilities, we have mentioned osSpecificOps, automation name: ‘Flutter’. We have mentioned the app path at the top with the device name and platform name and we created an object.
 
Flutter Terminal

Appium==OS environment is ‘android’ which will pick all the information and specify in the capabilities and it will pass a post request to the server.
 
Now here we are trying to find the element using CounterTestFinder and a ButtonFinder to click on the button. In the next line, we have created a driver using a remote method.
 
Then we have switched the Native App context to Flutter. You can switch this if you are using the Flutter app. Once the app is launched, we are validating that the counter text finder has value as zero by calling Flutter APIs internally. So here we are using two actions, one is clicking and the other is touch.
 
Flutter code

The button is to be clicked two times and thus we have used strictEqual function. In the last line of code, we are deleting the session.
 
Now to run the test we need to pass the environment variable to connect the device.
 
Flutter demo

Then we will check if our Appium server is running.
 
Flutter Appium

Then once you run the code you will be able to see the actions performed on the device and the counter will change to two.
 
Flutter Appium automation

This is how you can automate your Android and iOS app testing using Appium Flutter driver. Although there are many benefits of using Flutter, there are some limitations as well. The first thing is that you need to learn Dart language to develop and automate the Flutter app.
 
Suppose you need to run automated tests on multiple devices, then you will have to fire multiple commands in the terminal. Appium flutter driver depends on Flutter Driver APIs and as it’s still not matured enough, some actions cannot be performed.

| Posted on | 2 min Read

[xyz-ihs snippet=”quickLinks-Appium”]
 
In our previous chapter on Android, we learned about UI Automator Viewer, Which is available on Android SDK, to get the properties of the application object. In the case of iOS, Appium itself provides an Inspector which helps users to locate those elements in the application.
 
First, open the simulator by clicking on the dock option.
 
Open the simulator

Now in the Device/Simulators window, select the simulator. Open the Appium Desktop and keep the simulator side by side.
 
Device-Simulators

Once the inspector is started, select any of the objects on the screen. It will show you the complete hierarchy and properties of that object.
 
Appium-Test-Automation

At the top of the window, you can see the Record button which is used to record all the actions taken and record the script.
 
Appium-Test-Automation

To select any object, click on the Select Element button and then you can use Tap button to click on an object, Send Keys to enter text and clear to undo the action.
 
Appium-Test-Automation5

As soon as you perform an action on an object, it is recorded in the form of a script.
 
Appium-Test-Automation
Once you are done with the recording you can copy the script and paste in eclipse editor.
 
Appium-Test-Automation
In the next blog, we will learn how to write the first appium script for iOS.
 
Related Articles:

  • Appium vs Espresso: The Most Popular Automation Testing Framework in 2019
  • How To Install Appium On A Mac Machine
  • Writing The First Appium Test Automation Script (Android)
  • Basics of Appium Mobile Testing
  • 8 Common Appium Mobile Test Automation Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
  • In the last blog in this series we learned how to start the Appium server and launch app from the code. In this blog we will understand how to setup Appium on a Mac machine.

    Pre-requisite

    • Mac Book
    • Xcode
    • Simulator or real device
    • Appium
    • Eclipse
    • Java

    The first step is to install Xcode in the Mac Book. To do that, open app store and search for Xcode and click on the Get button to download Xcode.

    download Xcode
    Then click on the Install App option. This will install Xcode on your Mac machine. Now click on the Agree button if you agree with the terms and conditions and it will start installing components.

    Once the Xcode is installed, you need to select “Create a new Xcode project” and you will be redirected to the template selection option.

    template selection
    You may select any of the templates or leave default settings as they are. Click on the next button to navigate to the next screen.

    Now you will be asked to provide a product name and other product-related settings.

    settings
    Enter the required details and click on the next button. In the last seen of product settings, you will be asked to give the location in which to save your project.
    Select the location anywhere as per your requirements and click on the create button.

    create button
    Once the project is loaded go to the Product menu option and click on the Run option.

    Run option
    Once you click on the run option, it will launch iOS simulator.

    iOS simulator
    Now right click on the simulator icon on the doc panel and select the keep in doc panel. In this way, you don’t need to start Xcode to launch the simulator. Thus you don’t need to open the Xcode project each time to launch iPhone simulator. If you want to see the list of simulators, got to the Window menu and select the Devices option. You will get a list of all the simulators available with this version of Xcode.

    Installing JDK and setting the path

    Download JDK for Mac OS and once the file is downloaded, double click on the file and install Java.

    install Java
    Now you need to set the Java installation path in your environment variable. Open a terminal and write “open.bash_profile”.

    Open a terminal
    If “.bash_profile” does not exist then execute the command “touch~/.bash_profile”. This will create the file. So when you execute the command, it opens the “.bash_profile” file.

    execute the command
    Copy the path to JDK home, write export JAVA_Home= and then save this file. Open command prompt and execute the java – version command. Open Appium.io and click on Download Appium button.

    Appium button
    Now download the latest .dmg file and once downloaded, double click on the .dmg file.

    dmg file
    It will open a new window where you need to drag and drop Appium into the application folder.

    application folder
    Search for Appium and double click on the Appium icon. This will launch the Appium server on your Mac machine.

    Appium icon
    To Launch Appium on a simulator click on the Start Server button.

    Now click on the Start Inspector Session button in the Appium server.

    Start Inspector Session
    Once you select pCloudy as the cloud provider from the list you can click on Done.

    cloud provider
    Then you need to enter the Hostname, User name, API Key, Desired Capabilities and then click on Start Session.

    Start Session
    Your simulator is now connected.

    17
    Now you know how to setup Appium on Mac and in the previous blogs in this series we explained how to write the test script and start Appium server. In the next blog we will learn how to use Appium inspector to identify elements in an app.

    Related Articles:

    | Posted on | 2 min Read

    In the previous blog in this series, we learned how to write the first Appium script for Android devices. Now in this blog, we will understand how to start the Appium server.

    The code structure is segregated into three parts, the first part of the code starts the Appium server, the second part stops the Appium server.

    The Code Structure

    The third part is the main method which is necessary to execute the class and from this main method, all the above method are called.

    Starting Appium from code requires a path of two files which are kept inside the Appium folder.

    • node.exe
    • js

     

    Starting Appium Server

    In the code highlighted in red, we have called process class which is a Java class and declared it static.

    Starting Appium Server

    We then created a start server variable and pass the path to node.exe and main.js, highlighted in yellow. In the code highlighted in green, we added both paths into the same variable with spaces and created a method called startAppiumServer() which takes care of the Appium server startup process. Next step is to create an object of Runtime class which is again a java class and call the method getRuntime(), highlighted in blue. We will pass the variable “STARTSERVER” into runtime.exec() method. It will start the Appium Server.

    Once the process is started, we have to store the current state of the process into this variable. We will give a sleep time of 5 seconds as it takes time to start the process. what we are trying to validate here is, if the process is not null; it means that the process is started as highlighted in the gray box.

    Stop Appium Server

    Here we need to create another method named stopAppiumServer(). We again verify the state of the process and if it is not null, call a method of process class destroy().

    Stop Appium Server

    So now we know how to start and stop the Appium server from code. Let’s try to install and launch an app on a mobile device. Let’s see how we can install a .apk file on an Android device and launch it automatically without providing the path in Appium Server.

    Installing and launching the application

    To begin with, we call the stopAppiumServer() method to verify if any instance of Appium Server is already running and if so, then it closes that instance, as highlighted in red. The method highlighted in yellow starts the Appium Server.

    Installing and launching the application

    Then store the apk path file into a variable of File class, which is a Java class as highlighted in blue. Create another variable of File class app. It takes two parameters:

    • The absolute path of the apk file.
    • Name of the apk file.

    Now the absolute path is stored into appDir variable and the name of apk file in the second part as highlighted in the green box. The rest of the things are the same as discussed in the earlier sessions.

    The complete code is shown here.

    Package QA campus

    Appium server installation

    Appium server installation

    Now that you have learned how to launch app from code, let’s move on to the next blog where we will learn how to set up Appium on a Mac machine.

    | Posted on | 2 min Read

    In the last blog in this series, we learned how to set up Appium for test automation on a Windows machine. Now we will handle the application by writing the Java code. We will require the following software:

    Eclipse

    Selenium standalone Jar

    Appium Java Client
     

    This process consists of five steps as depicted in the picture below.

    Test Automation

    First, we need to collect the Selenium Standalone JAR and Appium Java Client Libraries. To download the Selenium standalone JAR file, go to seleniumhq.org/download then click on the Download version.

    Test Automation SeleniumHQ

    For Appium Java client you need to go to appium.io/downloads and download the libraries for the selected language.

    Test Automation Downloads

    Now to create a java project download Eclipse from eclipse.org/downloads. Launch Eclipse and select the workspace location.

    Test Automation Eclipse

    To set the Android SDK path into Eclipse, click on the Windows tab in the menu bar and select Preferences in the drop-down list.

    Test Automation

    Then select the Android option and browse your Android SDK location and click on Apply.

    Test Automation Preference

    Launch Eclipse and right-click on Package Explorer. Then select a new Java Project.

    Test Automation Java ADT

    Enter a project name and click finish.

    Once the project is created, add a folder to the project, for the project dependency files [Selenium Standalone] and [Appium Client Library] which you have downloaded.

    Test Automation Package Explorer

    Copy the downloaded file into the newly created project dependencies folder. Select both files and right-click. Then select the add to Build path option and then Add to Build Path. Thus both classes have been added to your project reference libraries.

    Test Automation Package Exp

    Create a class and import the required packages. Now right click on the src folder, hover the mouse over the new option and select the Class option.

    Test Automation Class

    Provide a package name, the name of class then select the main method checkbox.

    Test Automation Java Class

    A .java file within the package is created in Package Explorer panel. An auto-generated the main method is generated on the right panel.

    Test Automation Lauchapp

    You need to define a public class variable of AndroidDriver as your first line of code. You will now see an error for an android driver. Now hover your mouse over the error, you will get a list of quick fixes. Select Import ‘AndroidDriver’. Once you select the import package option, the android driver package will be imported and the error will be removed.Test Automation Android Driver

    Create an object of DesiredCapabilities. Again you will get an error for DesiredCapabilities. Hover the mouse over DesiredCapabilities and then select Import ‘DesiredCapabilities’ from the quick fix list.

    Test Automation Emulator

    Once you select the import package option, the DesiredCapabilities package will be imported and the error will be removed.

    Now set the DesiredCapabilities and also provide the package of an application and the name of application launcher activity.

    Now you need to instantiate the Android driver.

    To do this we need to have two parameters, the first is the Appium server address with the port number which it is running and the Capabilities.

    Test Automation capabilities

    Hover mouse on URL and import URL from Java.net. You will get an error for complete new URL section, hover mouse on the error and select Add throws declaration. By doing so exception has been added into your main method.

    Test Automation Driver

    Now start the Appium server and connect a device to the system. Now return to Eclipse and execute the code. This will launch the app in the device.

    In the code, we have declared the class as public so that we can access it anywhere inside out test.

    Test Automation Diving Deep

    The java main method is highlighted in yellow. We created an object of desired capabilities class which you can see in the green box. In method setCapability, there are two parameters. First is the capability name and second is the capability value as highlighted in blue. Then we created an object of AndroidDriver class highlighted in the black box. The code highlighted in gray is the findElement(By) method which can locate an element on the screen.

    Now that you have learned how to write a mobile test automation script using Appium test automation framework, we can move on to the next blog where we will learn how to start the Appium server and launch the app from code.

     
    Related Articles:

  • How to use Appium Inspector for Test Automation
  • Basics of Appium Mobile Testing
  • Inspecting Element on pCloudy Devices Using Appium Desktop
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  • Appium vs Espresso: The Most Popular Automation Testing Framework in 2019
  • | Posted on | 2 min Read

    In the previous blog, we informed about the basics of Appium and its architecture. Now let’s understand how to setup Appium. There are four steps required to setup Appium, they are enabling the Android device for test, test environment setup, Appium Configurations, Launch the app on the device.
     
    Appium Mobile Testing

    Pre-requisites for Appium Mobile Testing

     
    1. An Android device with OS 4.2+
    2. AUT(Application Under Test) file (.apk)
    3. Phone USB Drivers
    4. Java (JDK)
    5. Android Studio (SDK)
    6. Eclipse
    7. Selenium Standalone JAR
    8. Appium Java Client
    9. Appium for Windows
    10. .NET Framework 4.5
     

    Want to test your Mobile App?

    Join pCloudy Platform!

    Android Developer Options in device

     
    Every Android smartphone contains a secret set of Android developer options which are used by app developers who need additional functions to test their apps they are making for Android devices. It allows you to enable debugging over USB, capture bug reports on your Android device and show CPU usage on the screen to measure the impact of your software.
     
    To enable developer option in the phones to go to the settings, click on the about phone options and click on the build number 7 times to enable the developer options.
     
    About Phone

    Doing so will display a toast message for enabling the developer option. the current message appears if the developer message is already enabled on the phone.
     

    Phone Drivers

     
    The phone can communicate with the PC only if there are proper drivers installed for the USB cable. Each phone manufacturers provides its own drivers for the phone. PDA net is a driver which works with all the Android devices. It makes sure that your phone is detected in DDMS.
     
    Open pdanet.co and go to download screen and download the latest version to install it on your PC.
     
    Appium Setup

    Let’s verify if the phone is prepared.
     
    The ddms.bat file is present in the Android SDK tools folder.
     
    Dalvic Debug Monitor

    Double click on the file and you will see the Dalvic Debug Monitor window.
     
    DDMS

    If your DDMS option is enabled i.e. if you have installed the PDA net software and connected the device to the machine, that device should be detected in this monitor. Now let’s move on to the second step.
     

    Test Environment Setup

     
    First, you need to download JDK from the Oracle website.
    Oracle download

    Once downloaded, install it to your machine. Now you need to set the Java installation path in your Environment variable. Right-click on Computer option in the Start menu and select the Properties option. Select Advanced system settings and then select the Environment variables option in the Advanced tab.
     
    Advanced system setting

    Then select the new option and enter the new variable name as JAVA_HOME.
     
    Java Home

    Set the path of JDK to variable value and then click OK.
     
    To get an Android emulator you need to go to www.developer.android.com\studio#downloads and Scroll down to Command-line tools only section to download the zip file of SDK tools package for Windows.
     
    Command line tools only

    Don’t download the EXE file. Once the SDK file is downloaded, copy it to the C drive, make a new folder and extract the zip file in the new folder.
     
    Now you need to search for SDK manager in the bins folder and open SDK manager. Once the SDK manager window is open, go to tools and then get into the bin folder and in the address bar type cmd and hit enter. Now in the command prompt type SDK manager “platform-tools” “platforms; Android-28 and then hit enter. So now you will be able to see Platform tools and Platform folders in now folder you created for the extracted files.
    Click on platform tools and copy the address bar text and then again go to an environment variable. Then go to the path, a new window will pop up, make a new path and enter the copied text there and then click on OK.
     
    To download Appium go to www.appium.io and click on the Download button.
     
    Download Appium
     
    Under the latest version, click on the Appium-windows-1.12.1.exe file. Once the file is downloaded, open the appium.exe file. Click on the Start Server v1.12.1 button.
     
    ApAppium Start Server v1.12.1

    Then in the server window click on the Start inspection session icon at the top right corner.
     
    Appium server

    Now you can get started with Appium automation testing. Do read our next blog to get more information about Appium mobile automation and how to inspect elements using Appium Desktop.

    Want to test your Mobile App?

    Join pCloudy Platform!

     
    Related Articles:

  • Writing The First Appium Test Automation Script (Android)
  • How To Install Appium On A Mac Machine
  • Basics of Appium Mobile Testing
  • Inspecting Element on pCloudy Devices Using Appium Desktop
  • Cross Platform Mobile Test Automation Using Appium
  • | Posted on | 2 min Read

    [xyz-ihs snippet=”quickLinks-Appium”]
     
    Appium is an open source mobile app UI testing framework. You can test all types of mobile apps and perform automation test on physical devices as well as on emulators and simulators. Appium mobile testing does not have a dependency on mobile device OS and it supports cross-platform app testing as a single API works for both Android and iOS. Appium supports many popular languages like C, PHP, Python, C#, Java, Ruby, JavaScript, etc.
     

    What is Appium Mobile Testing?

     
    When Appium is installed then a server is set up on your machine that exposes the REST API. It receives a command request from the client and executes that command on Android or iOS mobile devices. Then it responds back with an HTTP response. It uses mobile test automation frameworks like Apple instruments or UIAutomator2 to drive the UI of apps.
     

    Approaches to Test Automation

     
    There is two approaches for mobile test automation, Image-based and Object-based approach. Let’s understand both in detail.
     

    Image-Based Approach for Test Automation

     
    This technique of object identification is based on the image processing attributes of the objects in the Application Under Test (AUT). Example: Automate user options like “click, type, drag-drop, mouse actions, etc.”
     

    Visual verification of the expected output

     
    • Not dependent on the platform underneath
    • Can be used to automate emulators as well as a real device.
     
    Image based approach

    The object-based approach of test automation

     
    This technique of test automation is based on recognizing the nativity of the objects in AUT. This nativity reorganization process for each individual object in the application is carried out using different attributes that are assigned to the object.
     
    It is used to extract the application object identifier with its properties from the actual native operating system source code, just like the developer used. This is an accurate and fast method to recognize the buttons, lists and other objects used by the application.
     
    One drawback of the object-based approach is that the recognition of the individual attributes of the object involved restricts these techniques ability to function in test scenarios that require third-party application access. This reduces the automation coverage of utilizing this technique.
     
    Object based approach

    Which approach should we choose?

     
    As we have seen, both approaches have their pros and cons. To get better results, you can merge both approaches and think about devising a hybrid test automation solution.
     
    The combination of OCR (image based) and native (object-based) approach allows users to build a single script that will be portable across different devices. It will make your automation robust and efficient and allows the users to confidently detect the relevant native and GUI defect within the mobile application.
     

    Appium Overview and Architecture

     
    Appium is an HTTP server that manages WebDriver sessions. On iOS devices, Appium proxies command to a UI automation script running on Mac Instruments environment. Apple provides an application called instruments which are used to do a lot of activities like profiling, controlling and building iOS apps. It also provides an automation component where you can write some commands in JavaScript which uses UIAutomation APIs which interact with the app user interface. Appium mobile automation uses these same libraries to automate iOS apps.

    Appium Overview and Architecture

    The Webdriver Script sends a command in the form of HTTP (JSWP) to the Appium Server. Then the Appium Server will then decide as per the request which driver should be initiated. So, in this case, the Appium Server will initiate the XCUITest driver and it will pass the request to the WebdriverAgent which is an IPA (WebdriverAgent.xcproj) developed by Facebook. WebdriverAgent is responsible to send the command to the Application Under Test (AUT) to carry out the actions in the app. Then the response will be sent to the Webdriver Script through the Appium server.
     
    Only iOS 9.3 and above version are supported by the XCUITest Driver. You can find all the capabilities for XCUITest Driver in the link mentioned below.

    https://github.com/appium/appium-xcuitest-driver

    UI Automation Server flow diagram

    The situation is very similar in the case of Android where Appium proxies command to a UIAutomator2 test case running on the device. UIAutomator2 is Android’s UI automation framework which supports running JUnit test cases directly into the device into the command line. It uses Java as the programing language but Appium will make it run from any of the web drivers supported languages.
     
    To answer the question “what is Appium automation?”, let’s have a look at the Appium philosophy.
     
    Appium philosophy
    Appium mobile testing is required for proper execution of continuous integration as it speeds up the overall testing process. Appium mobile testing helps to run the repetitive test which would take more time to perform manually. This is why appium mobile testing is the preferred choice for the developers when it comes to test automation.
     
    In the next blog, we will learn more about Appium mobile testing and how to install/configure the Appium setup on a windows machine.

     
    Related Articles:

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  • Appium Setup for Windows
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  • How To Install Appium On A Mac Machine
  • Appium vs Espresso: The Most Popular Automation Testing Framework in 2019
  • | Posted on | 2 min Read

    There are more than 5.5 Million apps available on Google Play and Apple App Store combined and by 2022, the number of app downloads will be around 250 Billion. The number of smartphone users in the world is more than 3 Billion and the users prefer using smartphones instead of desktop. This data shows that the mobile app market is very competitive and growing. In this age of digital transformation, the focus of enterprise mobility is to provide better user experience at great speed. The launch of 5G will further complicate the app development and testing process initially. But apart from this, there are three main challenges to overcome and pCloudy is leading the path to bring positive change. Let’s look at these challenges and their solutions.
     

    Challenges Faced by Enterprise Mobility

     
    There is a growing demand for quality at speed in the mobile app industry. The current market dynamics are such that it is necessary to provide the best quality product in less time to remain in the competition. When we talk about mobile app testing, quality can be maintained only when the enterprise can achieve scale. There is a myriad of devices in the market with different OS versions, browsers, Custom ROM, etc. and the app should be compatible with all the devices. How can ensure this and most importantly, how can we speed up the testing process on multiple devices? pCloudy can help you overcome this challenge with its best in the class features. Let’s have a look at them one by one.
     

    Parallel Testing to Achieve Scalability

     
    If we are talking about scalability then testing your app on 5,10 or even 20 devices are not enough for the enterprises to ensure a bug-free app. pCloudy enables to testers to run your test scripts concurrently on 50, 100 or maybe more devices. Enterprises have the option to perform parallel testing in our public cloud or in our plug & play on-premise infrastructure solution. With more than five thousand device browser combinations, enterprises can ensure that the application is working properly in all the devices.
     
    Parallel Testing
     

    Parallel testing on 50 devices

     
    You can see in the picture above, we have set up a device infrastructure for 50 devices for demonstration. Similar device setup can be provided for our on-premise solution and public cloud users can just log into the pCloudy platform and book the devices to perform testing. These real devices can be accessed remotely on the cloud which makes it more convenient for the users as there are no location constraints.
     

    Progressive Reports to Improve Quality

     
    It won’t be efficient to go through each and every report to analyze the data for every device. Instead of that, you get intelligent results where you can do a quick analysis of the errors and then debug quickly. In the pic below you can see the list of results for different builds with their start time, progress, status, and Action.
    In the status, you will be able to see how many tests pass, fail, and errors. This way you can concentrate on the tests which failed and you will save time as you don’t have to manually go through all the cases.
     
    Progressive Reports
     
    You can integrate any reporting framework with your existing Appium setup. The same way you have to configure with pCloudy by adding a one-line code while creating an asset.
     
    Test Case Report
     
    In the pic above you can see the test case result in detail. You can see the tags, test case name, build, Automation, and the live status of errors.
     
    Progressive report
     
    Once you expand the test case you can see the logs, Jason format, screenshots, video for that particular session. This information can be used to expedite the test execution.
     

    Integration with AI to Speed up Mobile App Testing

     
    The next challenge is to speed up and simplify the test script creation process. Usually, the procedure is to connect the device to the system and use an automation framework like Appium to use object repositories. If you are using images then the XPath may change depending on the devices.
     
    AI
     
    This AI based utility will help you to get the object repository for the entire page. So if there is an icon for contacts then this utility will automatically recognize the element.
     
    AI Code
     
    In the code, you just need to declare the driver for Appium and for pCloudy as well. Then you need to initialize the drivers and start using the code generated using the AI utility. This is how the script creation is expedited using AI.
     

    Conclusion

     
    To sum up, pCloudy has come forward with solutions for the enterprise mobility to deliver quality at speed with scale. Whether it’s parallel testing, progressive reports or creating a script using AI-based utility, all these features fix the problems that were mentioned earlier. The proverb “change is the only constant” fits well as pCloudy comes up with updates on a regular basis to resolve the issues and make mobile app testing better.

     
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  • | Posted on | 2 min Read

    Appium vs Espresso

     

    Mobile app automation testing has evolved as a crucial aspect of the mobile app development process to help deliver better quality solutions, under controlled time cycles and cost schedules. But for delivering bug-free app, choosing the best suitable automation testing framework for your app is very important. There are many automation testing frameworks available in the market with exceptional capacities. This blog is all about Appium vs Espresso and we will analyze which of these two most widely used Automation testing frameworks is preferable for your app testing.

     

    Espresso was not preferred because of its flakiness and instability issues. But, from the time Google has brought Android Test Orchestrator, a Gradle test option, instability and unreliability of Android Espresso tests have vanished. This, in turn, is creating a serious problem for the most popular automation framework Appium.

     

    Let’s find out in this blog if Espresso now comes with a power to kill Appium or Appium can hold its stand in this fiercely competitive market.

    Appium vs espresso1
    Let’s get into the details.
     
    What is Appium?

    It is an open source, cross-platform mobile app automation testing framework. Appium allows native, hybrid and web app testing and supports automation test on physical devices as well as emulators or simulators. The Appium server uses selenium web driver which permits platform independence and allows the user to use the same code for Android or iOS.

     
    Advantages of using Appium

    • Facilitates test execution without server machines
    • Appium is developed using cross-platform runtime environment like NodeJs which enables programmers to write server-side code in javascript. It is designed as an HTTP server and you can run the test without requiring a server machine.

       

    • Does not require app code recompilation
    • Most of the automation testing tools require testers to alter app code. Some of the test automation frameworks require testing professionals to recompile the code according to the targeted mobile platforms. Appium enables testers to evaluate both cross-platform and native apps without recompiling and altering the code that often.

       

    • Automates various types of mobile apps
    • Testers can avoid using different automation tools for different types of apps as Appium can be used for web apps, hybrid, and native apps too. It facilitates the testing of hybrid and mobile web apps as a cross-platform test automation framework. At the same time, it enables testers to test native apps through web driver protocol.

       

    • Testers can use real devices, emulators, and simulators
    • Testers use real devices to evaluate mobile app’s usability and user experience more precisely. Although, to speed up the mobile app testing one needs to use emulators or simulators too. Appium helps testers to produce reliable test results and reduce testing time by supporting real devices, emulators and simulators.

       

    • Provides a record and playback tool
    • In Appium, testers can use the inspector to accelerate testing through record and playback functionality. Appium inspector can record the behavior of native apps by inspecting their document object model (DOM). Record and playback tool can produce test scripts in a number of programming languages.

       

    • Testers can automate apps without adding extra components
    • Testers can execute the same test across multiple mobile platforms without putting extra time and efforts or adding extra component. Appium simplifies automation by keeping complexities in Appium server.

       

    • Supports several web driver compatible languages
    • You can integrate Appium with many testing frameworks and WebDriver – compatible languages including PHP, Java, Ruby, Javascript, C# and Objective C. Hence, a tester has the option to write test scripts in his preferred programming language.

     
    Disadvantages of using Appium

    • Common gestures
    • Appium lacks commonly used gestures like double-clicking in java-client libraries. It also does not support Android alert handling directly and the users cannot evaluate alert handling through native API. Testers have to put extra time and effort to test these gestures.

       

    • No script execution on multiple iOS simulators
    • Simulators make it easier for testers to mimic internal behavior of the underlying iOS devices. Although Appium does not allow users to run multiple test scripts on multiple simulators simultaneously.

       

    • Lacks the capability to recognize images
    • Appium cannot locate and recognize images automatically to evaluate games and apps precisely. The testers have to take help of screen coordinates to make Appium locate and recognize images.

       

    • Does not support older versions of android
    • Appium supports only Android 4.2 and later and does not supports older APIs for Android. There are still many people using devices which run on older versions of Android and developers find it difficult to test mobile apps developed targeting older Android API level.

     
    What is Espresso?

    Espresso is a tool developed by Google which is used for testing the UI of Android apps. It automatically synchronizes your test actions with the user interface of the mobile app and ensures that the activity is started before the tests run.

     

    Although when you execute an Espresso test you will have shared state in separate tests and some flakiness. For this Google came up with a solution. Android Test Orchestrator is a Gradle test option that helps in testing and increases the reliability of our automated test suites.

     

    If you use Gradle build tools in any version of Android Studio below 3.0 then you also have to update the dependency setup. Let’s take a look at the advantages of using Android Espresso.

     
    Advantages of using Espresso

    • Integration with Gradle
    • The new Android Espresso now has the power of the Android Studio and Gradle that comes along with it. So now invoking your tests, running it or modifying it is just a matter of calling a Gradle command. This gives the full power of command line to the developer and makes testability much easier.

       

    • Test Orchestrator
    • The new Android Espresso comes with the power of Android Test Orchestrator that allows you to run each of your app’s tests within its own invocation of Instrumentor. It ensures that there is minimum shared state and crashes being isolated. It allows you to filter the tests that you want to run and also distribute tests across devices. This implies that you have finer control over how your tests run.

       

    • Less flakiness
    • The scalability of the test cycle in Android Espresso is high due to the synchronized method of execution. A built-in mechanism in Espresso that validates that the object is actually displayed on the screen. This saves test execution from breaking when confronted with “Objects not detected” and other errors.

       

    • It’s easy to develop Espresso test automation
    • Test automation is based on Java and JUnit which Android developers are familiar with. There is no setup or ramping up to implement quality in the in-cycle stage of the app SDLC.

       

    • Reliable and fast feedback
    • Android Espresso does not need any server to communicate with, instead, it runs side by side with the app and delivers fast results. It gives fast feedback to the code changes so that developers can move to the next bug fix.

       

    • Simple workflow
    • Espresso allows developers to build a test suite as a stand-alone APK that can be installed on the target mobile alongside the app under test and be executed quickly.

     
    Disadvantages of using Espresso

    • It requires access to the application source code
    • Without the source code, you won’t be able to do anything. Also, There is a risk to get used to the in-built test synchronization and UI – then it might be hard to work with WebDriver.

       

    • Narrow focus
    • If UI tests are required for both Android and iOS, it will be necessary to write twice, for two different systems. If tests require to work with Android outside the application (for example, open a received notification with a text message), you’ll have to use additional tools, such as UIAutomator.

       

    • Knowledge of launching Android app on emulators required
    • It is desirable to have at least minimal experience of building and launching Android applications on emulators.

     
    Conclusion

    Appium and Espresso both can be used to perform UI testing on Android app but if you have to choose one of them then you need to decide on the bases of your requirements. What kind of app is it and what kind of testing you want to perform. Developers who want to perform UI testing for their native Android app should go for Android Espresso. Although, if the test needs to support iOS and Android both and you want to test at a functional level then you can use Appium.

     
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  • | Posted on | 2 min Read

    Appium Mobile Test Automation

     

    As we all know that Appium is the most preferred test automation tool for mobile applications. It is the first choice of the testers because of its flexibility i.e. it is open source, it has the best supported and highly active community of experts, Appium works across different platforms and works well with different scripting languages. Even after gaining such a popularity and having a strong community base, surprisingly,the users still make mistakes while running the mobile test automation with Appium.

     

    Here are a few common mistakes that Appium users encounter while using Appium Mobile Test Automation Tool:

     

    1.Unrestricted X Path Usage:

    Over usage of X Path could be found in case of Selenium as well but when it comes to Appium world, it has more outrageous effects because X Path is a more dynamic way to unearth the elements. But the biggest stumbling block in this scenario is its huge performance cost due to which it becomes elusive an area. This is because Google and Apple do not provide XML or XPath related queries in a way we would need them to be. All of this hospitalizes an unmanageable cost finding elements using X Path. Undoubtedly, X Path is the most trusted method but there are several other better locator methods like ‘Accessibility IDs’ that can be used in this sitch.

     

    2. Neglected usage of Accessibility IDs:

    The accessibility ID locator strategy is formulated to read a unique identifier for a UI element. For both iOS and Android, getting an element by their accessibility ID is the best method. Most importantly, it is preferable because it is quicker. It should be noted that semantically accessible IDs are different than the Web IDs. However, the two shouldn’t be combined. In many cases, the accessibility IDs are used only for the purpose of testing even though they have a larger purpose. So, in order not to spoil the accessibility of the applications just for the sake of testing, the bigger purpose of the accessibility IDs should be known. If the accessible IDs are set up on the elements to make the apps testable, the app accessibility also increases, provided that the accessibility labels are sensible to the users using them. But the foremost criteria not to make automation efforts a failure is to make the application testable in the first place.

     

    3. Not making a testable App:

    Developing an app should be a forecasted move where in the developers, even before writing the first line of code, plan to develop an app keeping the automation in mind. This they can achieve by keeping in mind the hooks and the unique IDs for the elements in order to make the app more testable. This strategic approach would be a reason for a successful mobile app test automation. Apart from this, there should also be a concentration on the different testing scenarios in order to elude the chances of overlapping before even getting into Appium coding. An open discussion forum with the development teams to discuss the plotting of right accessibility IDs, labels or Unique IDs for the application’s elements would reduce many test automation reliability concerns.

     

    4. Disregarding Application View States:

    One of the challenge faced in Mobile Test Automation is not setting up the application. Most of the developers do not set up the application in order to access specific views and user states rapidly. To quote an example given by Jonathan Lipps,one of the key contributors to the Appium project.

    A shopping cart functionality of the app might have ten different tests, and ninety percent of the tests might go through the same steps of logging in and searching items to be put in the cart which is a huge waste of time.

    So, your team should be able to set up an app’s state and start the test in that apposite state, straightaway. This is highlighted in Appium scenario due to the fact that the mobile simulators and emulators are slow and take longer than usual to reach to the right position on the test.

     

    5. Query for every element visibility:

    Not querying for the visibility of every element is another way to speed up the run-time of the Appium test scripts. This leads to an additional load of calls and waiting time for Appium while in the every activity of retrieving an element. The lag can be reduced by only requesting the element attributes which are important in perspective of the test code.

     

    6. Native Testing tools – Always better?

    According to some developers, usage of the native testing tools is the best way to get unfailing mobile tests. For example- Espresso in case of Android and XCUITest in case of iOS. This is not good advice as neither of Google or Apple are going to release and new automation technology. When the question is of stability, the stability of code should be chosen rather than technology and in this scenario, Appium is the best choice!

    As an exception, if the development team writes the tests and it’s most comfortable in mobile SDK language, using Google and Apple providers to build development environments. Also, when the constricted test-app or test code-app code integration is needed, then Appium might not be of much help. The utmost value is that Appium provides the WebDriver layer on top of the technology, which means the code can be written in any language and acts as a stable interface to that specific automation technology. Also, being a cross-platform tool, Appium allows to saves a lot of code and architecture in case of testing both iOS and Android devices.

     

    7. Appium is slow:

    Appium might be slower in some circumstances and also there are points in Appium codes where it does not seem efficient. Appium backs upon technologies that are slower than Appium and the curators of Appium have strategically chosen to utilize slower strategies for specific instances. For eg: Appium will certainly be slower if you are relying on XPath. The efficiency of the tool depends on how it is being used. Mostly, Appium is favored because of stability than the speed.

     

    8. Not Using Appium Documentation:

    The earlier Appium docs were not very user friendly. As a result, they weren’t used as much as they needed to be but the new Appium documents have been completely redesigned and reorganized. Information about the API reference to Appium, client libraries, supported drivers and Appium commands, code examples which was not provided before is all documented in the updated version. It deserves a revisit due to its newness and can be accessed at Appium.io.

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