Cross-browser testing is the leading challenge for software testers. Thereâ€™s an endless combination of varied legacy and modern browsers for software testers to check applications and websites to iron out compatibility issues.
The broad diversity in browsers and browser-specific functional parameters influence the performance of an application and its behavior across different browsers. Since it is difficult to identify each visitorâ€™s personal choice of a browser, it becomes the most important requirement to develop software that is fully compatible across multiple browsers and operating systems. This situation makes it urgent to perform aggregate Cross Browser Testing before deploying any application. Cross-browser testing is a way of analyzing and comparing application functionality and styles across several browser platforms, mobile devices, and OSâ€™s, to identify any potential inconsistency.
How important is Cross-Browser Testing?
Adaptability and User experience
Functionality is the backbone for any application, but an appealing user experience will drive higher adoption of the application and automatically improves adaptability among the users. During a competing market, the window of opportunity is to drive the adoption of applications regardless of browsers, devices, and platforms. Cross-browser testing makes sure an application has smooth functionality in a wide selection of browsers and Operating systems creating a pleasing user experience and increasing usability among the users.
How is Cross-Browser Testing performed?
After selecting the most important and the most generally used browsers from plenty of available browsers, to get started with this testing procedure is to open the application on multiple browsers and cross-check against a set of desired expectations. The most common browsers considered for testing are the latest versions of Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari. However, due to ample usage, the following browsers need to be tested:
- Google Chrome (Windows and Mac)
- Mozilla Firefox(Windows and Mac)
- Safari (Windows and Mac)
- Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge (Windows, Version 7 â€“ 11)
- Windows Phone
The application is tested in a selected browser with an idea of the application's display and functionality. When testing with desktop browsers is completed, the focus is shifted to the mobile browsers. Testing with all the desktop and mobile browsers can be a long and tedious process, so the main checks performed include a display, animations, and the functionality that uses background processes. Fixing application issues might not be possible in certain browsers that are rarely used. In such cases, the main focus will be on the functionality and usability of the application.
There are various tools online that can be licensed or freely downloaded for carrying out compatibility and usability tests. And can make your cross-browser testing less painful, as these tools are having a set of OS and browser requirements configured. Users can make setup the environment they need and they are good to go. Some of the available tools are:
- Sauce Labs
The objective of using the tool is to make the testing activity more repetitive, faster, and easier. It is recommended to freeze the testing objectives before selecting the CBT tool.
It will be very useful to have the following tasks performed before the activity begins:
- Select the key URLs /pages of the application
- Select the pages based on the company emphasis.
- Select the modules that are highly used or accessed
- Go by the template format of your application and plan the tests accordingly.
Software Compatibility Testing helps development teams to make sure that testing is an ongoing activity and the results are much more valid. Businesses are getting more considerate about the importance of Compatibility Testing, as it goes a long way in safeguarding customer experience. Undoubtedly, it is important for application makers to adjust themselves to it and offer a smooth and seamless experience as well.