The market for physical device testing has been around for a while. Its significance in the world of testers is indisputable even today.
Physical device testing continues to be revered in this era of automation testing and real device cloud testing because of its unwavering importance in usability testing and hardware functionality testing, such as cameras and GPS.
However, if you want to cut the cost of your project as a whole, you must choose a more intelligent solution that would allow for functions like mass cross-browser testing.
Real device cloud testing can help you in that situation. It offers a variety of benefits, including access to cloud storage, communication tool integration, testing with the most recent virtual browser and OS versions, and much more.
This article compares and contrasts real device cloud testing with physical device testing in order to determine which would work best for your business model.
What Is Physical Device Testing?
Physical device testing is the process of manually and automatically testing your website, mobile app, or both using a hardware device. It might be anything from making sure a button works properly to determine whether the program freezes on specific devices when a memory storage problem arises.
Although it may be used for websites and desktop programs, this phrase is most frequently used to describe a technique for testing mobile applications. You can accurately simulate how your app or website will appear and work on real devices by doing testing on physical devices. On real devices that represent the chosen mobile platform, the testing can be run in a lab setting. Using physical devices may be more appropriate in some circumstances than others, depending on the kind of test you’re running and the setting.
Why Should You Test With Actual Hardware?
When you run your test suite on real devices, it offers a number of valuable features. Here are some specifics:
Additional hardware support: Physical devices provide a number of functions that virtual devices do not yet offer, such as cameras, sensors, GPS, facial recognition, accelerometers, and pyrometers.
Test in a real-world setting: Physical device testing ensures that your tests can be modified to work in actual environments. Automatable test scenarios that produce false positives can help you get rid of shaky tests. Any flaws discovered on the gadget are simple to reproduce.
Improved performance: Comparatively speaking, testing on real devices is quicker and more accurate than testing on virtual devices like emulators and simulators. Naturally, this would lead to quicker build times.
Fix usability problems: Physical gadgets make it much easier to find usability problems. With a physical device, you can quickly and easily resolve these usability concerns, whether it be an unresponsive button or a subpar system setting. Physical devices can be used to undertake usability testing with ease.
Faster bug detection: Prevention is preferable to treatment. Eliminate complexities and incompatibilities by testing on real devices before releasing them for public consumption and customer review. You can write better test cases as a result of this.
Report with assurance: When you test an app or website on genuine devices, you can report to your client with confidence that it has passed the test. This could hasten the pace at which your product reaches customers.
Support from third parties: Not all libraries are supported by virtual devices. However, the majority of them are supported by actual objects.
What Is Real Device Testing?
Real device testing is the process of testing websites or software programs on actual, physical devices like smartphones, tablets, or other pieces of hardware. To make sure the software operates as intended and offers a positive user experience across various device configurations, operating systems, and network circumstances, it requires testing these devices.
By testing applications on actual end-user devices, real device testing tries to replicate real-world usage scenarios. It assists in identifying potential issues that might occur on particular devices or operating systems, such as compatibility concerns, performance stumbling blocks, or user interface bugs.
Why Should You Test Real Devices in the Cloud?
Gratifying features like “access your data anytime, anywhere” and “subscribe once, test for life” are real device cloud testing’s enduring successes.
Keep up to date: You must set up a mobile environment that is current with the most recent product releases, whether they be for devices, operating systems, or brands. The easiest way to achieve this is through real device testing because it has all the most recent OSs, browsers, and brands. Choose within seconds from countless alternatives!
Work from anywhere: When you can’t rely on your team members to be accessible on-site to test the real devices, things might get complicated. At that point, actual cloud-based gadgets enter the scene. Even if you are working on the busiest project, including cloud-based mobile app testing, you can connect with your peers and test from the comfort of your work vacation destination or your own home.
Get the newest information: You must wait till you can use a certain feature or utility that is missing from your actual gadget. In contrast, Real device cloud testing allows you to instantly access all of the features you require via plugins and extensions.
Perfect communication: There’s no need to write countless emails and wait impatiently for a quick response only to hear from customers about the same bug. Project management solutions like JIRA and Slack allow you to quickly flag a bug and alert your colleagues.
Parallel testing: Real device on Cloud is appropriate for large-scale testing, allowing you to test up to 100 devices at once. One significant benefit of real device cloud testing is this.
Physical Device Testing vs. Real Device Cloud Testing
There are two methods for evaluating the functionality and performance of mobile apps: physical device testing and real device cloud testing. While real device cloud testing makes use of virtual devices hosted on the cloud, physical device testing uses actual equipment. Let’s contrast these two approaches in a number of areas:
UI Layout Testing
Testing on a physical device enables accurate UI layout evaluation because testers can interact directly with the device. Due to the virtual environment, real device cloud testing may be limited in its ability to detect subtle UI layout flaws.
When taking the hardware capabilities of the device into consideration, physical device testing offers an accurate indication of loading speed. Testing on a real device over a cloud may result in increased network latency, which will influence loading speed results.
GPS functionality may be verified in practical situations through physical device testing. Testing on real devices may not be able to accurately simulate particular GPS situations.
Camera, Sensors, and Bluetooth
Comprehensive testing of the camera, sensors, and Bluetooth functions is possible with physical device testing, confirming their appropriate operation. Device-specific functionalities may not be fully accessible during real-device cloud testing.
By physically interacting with the device, physical device testing enables testers to check gesture control accuracy. Testing for precise gesture control may not have full support on real device clouds.
Different Browsers, Devices, and OS Support
The ability to test across a variety of browsers, devices, and OS settings is where real device cloud testing excels. In order to cover different combinations, physical device testing may call for a bigger device inventory.
Memory, Size, and CPU Testing
The performance of the CPU, RAM, and other components on a given system can be precisely measured through physical device testing. Testing on real devices may have trouble precisely simulating the hardware requirements.
App Performance Testing
App performance can be efficiently measured by both physical device testing and real device cloud testing, but physical device testing may yield more precise results due to direct device interaction.
Network Connectivity and Latency Speed
Testing on real devices in the cloud allows for exact simulation of various network situations, such as latency and connection rates. Physical device testing might not be able to accurately simulate all network circumstances.
Remote Working Flexibility
Remote access to devices is made possible through real device cloud testing, giving distributed teams flexibility. Testers must physically access the equipment in order to perform physical device testing, which restricts their ability to operate remotely.
Due to the expense of purchasing and maintaining physical devices, testing them can be more expensive. Since real device cloud testing does not require the purchase or upkeep of actual equipment, it provides cost-effective alternatives.
Physical device testing necessitates routine maintenance, which includes fixing and updating the device. Since devices are maintained centrally, real device cloud testing minimizes maintenance efforts.
Parallel testing across numerous devices is possible with real device cloud testing, greatly cutting down on testing time. The same level of testing speed may not be possible with physical device testing.
Based on the device’s actual location, physical device testing offers precise geolocation testing. Testing on real devices may have issues mimicking exact geolocation conditions.
Storage-related functionality can be directly evaluated through physical device testing. Testing on real devices may not correctly reflect storage configurations on those devices.
Cloud testing on real devices excels in parallel testing by allowing the concurrent execution of test cases across numerous virtual devices. To perform parallel testing on physical devices, additional resources might be needed.
Which One Should You Pick For Your Business: Physical Device Testing Or Real Device Testing?
For your organization, deciding between physical device testing and real device cloud testing depends on a number of variables. To assist you in making a wise choice, take into account the following:
Testing Scope and Coverage: Real device cloud testing can offer comprehensive coverage with its virtual devices if your company needs to test on a variety of device configurations, browsers, and operating systems. If you need to test hardware-related functionality or have unique device-dependent needs, physical device testing can be appropriate.
Cost: Real device cloud testing reduces costs by removing the need to acquire and keep track of a large stock of physical devices. Real device cloud testing might be a more cost-effective choice for your company if you need to test frequently across a variety of device configurations or if you have a limited budget.
Flexibility in remote working: If your company employs a distributed or remote workforce, real device cloud testing gives testers access to devices from any location, promoting collaboration and flexibility. The testers may need to be physically present while evaluating real devices, on the other hand.
Testing Speed and Scalability: Real device cloud testing enables concurrent testing across numerous virtual devices, drastically cutting down on testing time. Scalability is a feature that enables you to run tests on numerous devices at once. The number of accessible devices and the capability for concurrent testing may be a constraint for physical device testing.
Device-specific Testing: Physical device testing offers more precise validation if your app strongly depends on particular device functionalities, such as the camera, sensors, or Bluetooth. Accessing and testing such device-specific features may be restricted in real device cloud testing.
The decision between physical device testing and real device cloud testing ultimately comes down to your particular business needs, financial constraints, and testing goals. A hybrid strategy that combines the two approaches might also be taken into consideration, utilizing the advantages of each strategy for certain testing phases or particular testing circumstances.
Summing It Up
It’s crucial to thoroughly weigh several considerations before choosing between real device cloud testing and physical device testing. For extensive testing using real device cloud testing, it is advisable to think about depending on reliable cloud testing service providers. This strategy enables you to keep in front of the market’s testing trends.
Additionally, to ensure thorough testing coverage for automation tests, you can set up your automation frameworks to use real device capability generators. Without having to keep track of a physical device inventory, you can access a variety of devices, browsers, and operating systems by utilizing the knowledge and infrastructure offered by cloud testing service providers.
This approach is perfect for distributed or remote teams since it is adaptable, scalable, and cost-effective.
It is crucial to assess your specific testing requirements, your available resources, and the organizational setup of your team before deciding on the best course of action for your company’s mobile app testing approach.