How to Perform Compatibility Testing Effectively
A software product that cannot perform appropriately within a number of different platforms and devices can hinder its usability substantially.
Join the DZone community and get the full member experience.Join For Free
Technology has seen some drastic changes over the past decade with the constant evolution of products. The industry has undergone a few major disruptions, giving rise to different types of practices and approaches in the software industry. The experts in the industry are trying to adapt to these changes. Computers and mobile devices have become an integral part of our lives. From ordering your favorite food to shopping from your favorite online retailer, everything is possible with a click of the button. This digital transformation has forced organizations to take compatibility testing seriously.
Quality assurance plays an indispensable role in identifying the bugs and defects within a product. It is not a wise decision to release any product in the market without performing bug fixing or quality testing. To stay competitive in the market, the application or software you provide for your customers must be of high quality.
What Is Compatibility Testing?
Compatibility testing makes it possible to deliver a software product that will function in a proper manner, regardless of the computing environment. Compatibility testing is primarily classified into six categories which are software, operating system, mobile, browser, network, and hardware.
1. Compatibility Testing Is Vital
It is a prerequisite to conduct compatibility testing for applications that will be used across devices. Compatibility testing is recognized to be one of the Non-Functional Requirements (NFRs) which is provided along with the software project. Most organizations fail to realize the importance of compatibility testing. Compatibility testing requirements have to be laid up front even before the project starts. This helps in the delivery of the software without any hassles.
You will be surprised to know that there are times when a bunch of the projects go on hold at the final step owing to incompatibility issues. Hence, it is recommended to plan as well as figure out the requirements of the compatibility testing in addition to the functional requirement. This will result in developing a flawless product.
2. The Backward and Forward Compatibility Test
At the time of developing a product, every developer aims to develop an app that does not need replacement or an upgrade regularly. This is not true in reality. Every person wants their application to go on for several years without needing an upgrade. On the contrary, companies want to invent and upgrade their product to stay in the competition. Let’s say people are using an app for almost five years. They may encounter a bunch of compatibility issues. Such types of issues are more common in individuals who are using the older version of the phones. Though an organization wants to be up-to-date in the latest trends, you don’t want to ignore your old and loyal customers. Hence, it is recommended to draft the support for the application for the next and previous two generations in a computing environment for ensuring smooth and successful functioning.
3. Compatibility Tests and Agile Go Together
People usually come to the conclusion that if your project is Agile, then you don’t have to worry about compatibility tests. This assumption is completely wrong. Compatibility testing has to be done irrespective of the type of project. Test planning is dependent on many factors like the methodology preferred by the team, experience of the developer, etc. You can make use of Scrum for the development of relevant compatibility tests, in accordance with the testing scope, indicating that it is essential to make plans beforehand and set up the required infrastructure. The Scrum scope has a direct impact on the range testing. Scopes of such testing are inclusive of user experience, peripheral software, system, and devices, compatibility with various databases and operating system, carrier compatibility, and hardware compatibility. It is essential to take the decision regarding the compatibility test into the standalone cycle with an eye to making the usual test effort, which is dependent on the kind of organization, project, cost, time, and other similar elements.
4. Prior to Testing, It Is Essential to Figure out The Prerequisites of The Testing Level
A wide array of applications is used across the globe on an extensive scale. The application is known to range from different web applications that are developed for the phone to different highly complex applications which are used for business or other similar purposes. An app that is used by the employees working in an organization is different for people that make use of the application throughout the world. Hence, it is essential to opt for a well-drafted plan for the conduction of compatibility testing with an eye to determining the vital issues that are encountered by the app.
5. You Need a Fully-Equipped Laboratory Environment for Compatibility Testing
Compatibility testing is considered to be a complicated procedure. It is hard to tell which product will be used for the purpose of testing. In accordance with the product a person is planning to use, it is necessary to involve setting up an environment that is used for the simulation of different end users’ options like servers, desktops, phones, laptops, etc.
Compatibility testing stands out of the ordinary in conferring consistent experience and amazing performance across platforms to almost all users.
Published at DZone with permission of Stella M. See the original article here.
Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.