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Top 4 Android UI Testing Frameworks List to Look For

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Top 4 UI Frameworks For Android Automation Testing
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Tired of spending hours and days manually testing every module of your android app’s user interface just to ensure it behaves as expected? Bid goodbye to traditional testing methods and say hello to Android UI testing frameworks. They are the real superheroes in building stable and quality Android applications.

These frameworks save you time and help catch bugs in the early stages before they cause a wreck. This blog will list the top 4 Android UI frameworks you can use for automated mobile testing.

What is Android UI Testing Frameworks?

Android UI testing frameworks allow developers and testers to create and run automated tests for UI of Android applications. These frameworks allow testers to simulate user interactions, like tapping buttons, entering text, and swiping gestures, to validate the behavior and functionality of their application’s user interface (UI).

Why the Need for Android UI Testing Frameworks?

Android UI testing frameworks play a crucial role in ensuring the stability and reliability of an Android application’s user interface. Imagine what happens when your application’s UI breaks. I’m pretty sure the users will be frustrated and abandon using your app. And nobody wants that. That’s when Android testing frameworks become your superhero.

These frameworks help validate your application’s UI and functionality across different devices, screen sizes, resolutions, platforms, browsers, and versions – within a short span of time.

How to Select the Best Android UI testing frameworks for Automation

Some of the key factors to consider while selecting an Android testing framework are as follows,

1. Team skillset 

Is your QA team skilled in programming languages to create test code? What languages are they expert in? However, if your QA team lacks experience in coding. The best solution is to opt for a scriptless testing tool like Testsigma that does not require any coding to automate UI testing.

2. Real device support

Check if the tool allows you to test your Android apps on real devices and platforms. 

Testsigma allows you to execute your automated tests across 3000+ smartphones/tablets and 1000+ browser/OS combos.

3. Set up

Is the tool easy to install and set up? Traditional UI testing tools like Appium require you to install, set up, and configure the framework to run the tests. However, with tools like Testsigma, you can run your mobile tests on the cloud.

4. Ease of use

Is the tool easy to use? Is it accessible to everyone? The major drawback of code-based testing tools is that everyone involved in testing must be well-versed in the programming language required for creating test scripts. However, low-code testing tools like Testsigma eliminate the need for coding, thereby making automated testing easy and accessible for everyone in the project.

Android UI Testing Frameworks

The best Android UI framework for your application depends on your testing needs, budget, skillset, and business requirements. So, choose a tool that aligns with your application type and testing needs. 

Choosing a unified test automation tool like Testsigma allows you to test both Android and iOS apps in one place.

4 Top Android UI Testing Frameworks

Here are four popular UI testing frameworks for Android automation testing,

Testsigma:

Testsigma’s automation mobile app testing tool is a tool you should check out for your Android UI automation needs. We’ve got thousands of real devices with various Android versions available for you to perform tests on.This is highly beneficial if you’ve got to test your app on older devices. Since older devices come with different screen resolutions, you can check out how the app’s UI looks and interacts in real-time with our repo of devices. This tool also takes screenshots and video recordings to report any bugs and unusual behaviour wherever necessary.

Testsigma

The test cases can be written in simple English, and you don’t have to install anything on your device or desktop because our tool runs tests on a highly secure and scalable cloud. In this post, we’ve discussed automating mobile apps using Testsigma – Automating Mobile Applications.

Testsigma Pros

  • It’s a code-less testing tool that lets us write our test cases in simple English; beginners and intermediate testers with no prior experience in coding can quickly start automating test cases on this tool
  • The testing happens on a cloud, and based on the project requirement, it can be scaled up or down without any hassles to the user.
  • It offers more than 1,000 Android and iOS devices with several browser-OS-version combinations.
  • It can be seamlessly integrated with CI/CD tools.
  • Supports parallel test execution.
  • Offers automatic bug reporting so you can collaborate with the team and fix the errors
  • Supports unlimited users
  • Even complex workflows can be automated

Testsigma Cons

  • It’s offers a 21-day free trial to experience the tool. Besides, unlike other tools, there are no hidden costs with Testsigma. For example, you can look at this comprehensive comparison between Testsigma and other tools – Testsigma vs Selenium, Tricentis Tosca, Micro Focus UFT

Appium: 

An open-source framework with a rich open source community, Appium is perhaps the most commonly used framework for automation testing mobile UI – Android andopen-source iOS. It can be used to test native and hybrid apps, and as it’s a cross-platform tool, the same test can be performed on various platforms. Appium allows us to write scripts in any language we choose, like Java, Ruby, C#, Javascript, PHP, and Python.

Appium UI framework

The Appium UI Inspector helps testers identify UI elements and how they align with each other. Testers can also leverage the UI Automator framework or Instrumentation to test the Android app; its framework interacts with Selenium WebDriver and Node.js applications.

Appium Pros

  • Easy set-up process, but it’s important to note that setting up Appium is easy for programmers only because it requires solid programming skills for configuring the server.
  • Cross-platform and cross-language support
  • Appium UI Inspector for scanning and analyzing various UI components within the app
  • No additional device installations

Appium Cons

  • Speed matters, and its architecture makes the Appium framework relatively slow. Besides consuming time to start the server, it also takes time to trigger actions.
  • Appium doesn’t support testing Android devices older than Android 4.2, a predicament because it cannot cover many devices.
  • Testers must manually enter element locations as Appium doesn’t fully locate elements or identify images automatically.

2. Espresso:

Most Android developers across the world argue that Espresso is the best UI framework that there is! This open-source framework is developed by Google for Android, which makes it super convenient for writing solid and reliable Android UI tests.

Test logic can be written close enough to the Android app’s logic, and the framework can be customised as per the developer’s need. Plus, it has a simple API. On the API level, it supports Android 8.0 onwards.

With a dependency on the Hamcrest library, it supports Matchers from it, which most developers are familiar with. Using this library, developers can add custom actions for simplifying the testing process.

Espresso Pros

  • Light, easy to learn, and compact API that is open for customizations. Managing Android UI tests is effortless.
  • It can be easily integrated with Android Studio — native Android development studio.
  • Simple set-up process and offers synchronization capabilities which means we don’t have to write any extra code for waiting until activity/fragment are loaded or completed.
  • Test cases are executed fast.

Espresso Cons

  • Espresso supports test cases that are written in Java and Kotlin. This limited tech stack is a disadvantage for many, especially for people with React-Native or Flutter app framework.

3. UI Automator:

Google’s testing framework — UI Automator allows us to practically test any app that’s installed on the device. But what makes this framework effective is it allows writing test cases without fully knowing the implementation details of the apps.

It can interact with various Android apps and its APIs help us perform tasks like rotating the screen on a test device or open Settings (or other menu items). The following piece of code is an example of how it can manipulate or trigger actions on devices.

UI Automator

The test cases can be written in Java or Kotlin, and the framework comes with two sets of APIs — UIAutomator APIs and  Device State APIs. The UI Automator API lets us manage the app’s UI components while the Device State APIs gives us access to operate the device. Plus, this framework has a UI Automator Viewer option that lets us study and analyze UI components in mobile devices.

UI Automator Pros

  • Supports testing on devices starting from Android version 4.1. 
  • Simple API framework

UI Automator Cons

  • Supports only Java and Kotlin
  • Doesn’t support web view
  • The API is complex while working with lists

Which Android UI Testing Framework Should You Choose?

Several considerations must be addressed while selecting a UI testing framework for automation testing. First, evaluate the platform or technology on which your application is developed, as certain frameworks are designed to work only with specific platforms or languages. It’s also vital to examine the complexity of your application and the framework’s level of support and documentation.

Another important consideration is the extent of automation required. Some frameworks include more advanced automation features, such as continuous integration and visual testing, while others are more basic and may necessitate more manual intervention.

Finally, evaluate the framework’s pricing and licencing requirements, as certain frameworks may be more expensive or require specific licencing agreements.

When selecting a UI testing framework for automated testing, it’s critical to analyse your demands and select a framework that fulfils those objectives while providing essential capabilities and support.

Conclusion

Android UI testing frameworks are indispensable for modern mobile app development. They help developers and testers deliver high-quality Android applications by ensuring the reliability, consistency, and compatibility of their user interfaces across a wide variety of devices and screens. 

Using Testsigma, you can automate both Android and iOS tests 10X faster across 3000+ devices/tablets and 1000+ browser/OS combos on the cloud without any coding.

Start automating your android UI tests the easy way

Ready to automate your Android devices tests? You can sign up for a free trial or chat with us for more details.

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