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Sep 30, 2014

Don't Risk Your Company's Reputation: Why Mobile App Testing is a Must

mobile_app_testingMobile apps are powerful tools. In the hands of consumers they can boost or break a company’s reputation; in an enterprise they can propel or stifle productivity. With so much at stake, there’s little room to skimp on quality when developing mobile apps. With mobile app testing, you can properly test your apps before deploying them to employees or the public; ensuring your mobility efforts help rather than hurt your company.

Case Study: Starbucks

Starbucks is a prime example of what can happen when companies rush through app development and skimp on a proper mobile app testing process. Earlier this year, news broke that the iPhone version of the coffee giant’s mobile payment app stored passwords in clear text, leaving users vulnerable to malicious attacks affecting their Starbucks accounts. The blatant security blunder turned into a PR nightmare for the coffee shop chain, who was left scrambling to patch their app as well as their reputation. The worst part? The vulnerability would have probably been flagged with basic security testing and Starbucks could have easily repaired the issue before launching the app, thus avoiding a PR fiasco.

Beyond Catching Bugs

A common misconception about mobile app testing is that it’s main function is to catch software bugs. While that’s certainly a useful and integral part of the process, the primary goal of testing is to ensure quality. Beyond verifying expected functionality, proper testing answers the question ‘Does the application work well?’ These days, mobile apps compete in a sophisticated marketplace and the bar is set very high in terms of quality. In addition to identifying bugs, security vulnerabilities, and potential UI/UX concerns, comprehensive mobile app testing looks at factors such as data and battery usage, speed, and responsiveness. A mobile app that combines usability with functionality that fills a needs gap goes a long way in attracting and retaining customers. A recent survey conducted by Novantas shed some light on just how much of an impact apps can have on consumers when they revealed that nearly 10% of respondents would go through the trouble of switching banks based on mobile services alone.

Test B2E Mobile Apps to Drive Adoption

Employees are just as fussy about enterprise mobile apps as customers are with public apps. Deploying buggy or difficult-to-navigate enterprise applications can spell disaster for your organization’s BYOD efforts. Research has shown that employees unhappy with poor quality or ineffective enterprise apps are likely to switch to their own personal apps instead, which introduces an entirely new set of mobile app security and privacy concerns into the enterprise. Instead of widely releasing untested apps to employees, consider starting with a test group composed of select would-be end users. In this smaller deployment, you can not only identify defects, but also gain valuable feedback on ways to improve the effectiveness of the application. In many cases this leads to a few small tweaks that go on to really help drive adoption rates once the app is fully deployed.

Save Time, Money, and Your Reputation

The mobile world moves quickly and there is a tendency to overlook testing under the guise of saving time and money. However, the reality of the situation is that when compared to the consequences of releasing untested apps, mobile app testing is a good investment. It is much more cost effective to repair and fine-tune functionality apps before they’re released, and with the proper feedback loops in place, testing actually lets you reduce your time to market.

Learn More

Watch this webinar to learn how to optimize mobile app performance testing  to increase mobile app quality and ratings. Take away best practices for managing mobile app testing for hundreds or thousands of users, achieving "faster time to market" by iterating development cycles more quickly, and improving overall app quality through continuous innovation and user feedback.


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