Like clockwork, Apple uses its WWDC (worldwide developer conference) to announce upcoming OS releases expected in the fall and this year was no different. Yesterday at WWDC2016, Apple announced some innovative changes, features, and tools.
One of the key announcements was about iOS 10, which comes with a list of new user interface features. History shows that Apple customers shift to a new major OS within the first 1-2 weeks after launch, which doesn't leave much time for organizations to develop and test for that platform. This is why it's important to learn the new features, the release schedule, and align your development and testing plans so your app is tested against the first beta version.
The most important thing to note is that iOS 10 is in Beta mode right now. Perfecto supports the iOS 10 Beta 1 developer preview—it can be evaluated by both developers and testers today.
Let's focus on some of the new iOS 10 features and how they impact existing iOS test plans.
Supported Platforms for iOS 10
Apple plans to support most of the leading iOS devices with the exception of Phone 4S and older, the first iPad Mini, and a few old iPods. That leaves a lot of devices. So testing for iOS 10 across various platforms and screen sizes/resolutions is a must, and the sooner the better!
User Engagement Changes
- Voice commands/Siri enhancements
- Force Touch enhancements
- Maps open to app developers, and current Maps app enhanced
- Enhanced lock screen and notifications
- Richer messaging and emojis added
Regarding user engagement, application teams need to learn the new iOS 10 features like voice commands and maps and see how they can utilize them to deliver a better user experience.
From a testing perspective, existing test scenarios will need to change if apps make use of new features like Siri integration. It's now possible for users to interact with your app through Siri voice commands (see image on the right of Lyft using Siri to order a ride). As a result, new scenarios such as background apps (like Music) competing with a user launching Siri within an app will need to be tested.
The lock screen and enhanced notifications will also have an impact on your existing tests. For example, in iOS 10 there's a new feature called "Raise to wake" that displays notifications on the lock screen and allows the user to interact with them just by picking up the device. This is a sensor-based feature that you'll need to test for. Any other visual-based testing for the previous iOS 9 lock screen would need to change. If you're basing your tests on visual validation of the iOS 10 lock screen, take into account that the colors on the iOS 10 lock-screen are changing, which will impact your visual validations.
Start Now With iOS 10 Beta in Perfecto's Lab
Since iOS 8, Apple has done monthly releases (public Betas, general availability releases) aimed to fix defects (See the calendar below for the 2016 iOS release history to date). These frequent releases complicate ongoing app development life cycles, and organizations need to evaluate and test these betas as more and more users are upgrading to them for better performance and stability.
With all the changes expected in the next three months, it's imperative to start preparing today.
With that in mind, Perfecto is happy to announce first-day support for iOS 10 beta 1 developer preview (see the image below of an iPhone 6 running iOS 10 in the Perfecto CQ Lab).
There were a few other important features announced at WWDC such as HomeKit and Watch OS 3.0 that have implications for mobile testing, and we'll be watching them and providing insights on how they relate to mobile testing plans. Perfecto will continue tracking the enhancements to iOS 10 and the beta releases leading up to the general release in September.
To learn more about iOS 10 features, go to Apple's iOS 10 page.