How to Conduct Successful Functional Testing for Mobile Apps

Are you engaged in functional testing of mobile apps? The ubiquity of smartphones has brought to the fore the importance of mobile applications in conducting various activities. Among these are paying utility bills, playing games, listening to music, communicating on social media, booking tickets, buying from eCommerce stores, and many others.

However, alongside the convenience and ease-of-use facilities offered by these applications, there is also the danger of malware or cybercriminals stealing data and money. In the highly competitive world of mobile apps, the success of such apps depends on the level of user experience they provide. To ensure a good user experience, mobile apps must be subjected to mobile application testing. And among various types of testing, mobile app functional testing remains fundamental to the testing regime.

What is functional testing for mobile apps?

This type of mobile app testing ensures the application addresses the specific requirements and user needs. The test is planned by keeping the end-user perspective in mind and assesses the responsiveness and working of every feature in the application as expected. It holds good for every mobile application – iOS, Android, or Windows and type – Native, Hybrid, and Mobile Web.

During any mobile app functional testing exercise, the following questions are generally asked:

  • Can the end-user perform this activity?
  • Are all features of the app working as they were designed to be?
  • Are the features properly integrated to deliver the results?

The mobile app testing strategy to validate the features and functionalities is designed to be conducted for every update of the application. Here, test automation can be adopted to test the basic features.

Let us understand how to conduct successful functional testing for mobile apps.

# Identify the testing requirements: The foremost requirement to plan a mobile app testing strategy is to find out the elements needed for the test. These may include the user commands, processes, screens, and integrations that will be part of the testing exercise. Here, inputs from both development and operations teams can be included to understand the requirements and their order of preference. Also, the test team should know the target audience – whether it is the consumer or entrepreneur etc.

# Prepare a test plan: This includes jotting down the scope and objectives of testing, the schedule, and the resources needed to conduct the test. The resources would include test specialists, hardware, and software tools. Thereafter the test team should prioritise the test cases to be developed as not every test is similar in significance. Also, the application functionalities should be verified to check if they meet the business requirements and do not develop issues in case of interruptions. For example, while operating the application should there be any incoming call, the application should go into the background and allow the user to attend to the call. And it is only after attending the call that the application comes to the foreground.

# Test automation: Ideally this should be included in the test plan creation phase. However, its critical importance in the scheme of things needed it to be treated as a separate section. Even though test automation improves the quality of the application and reduces the time-to-market, it should be planned sensibly. For example, there is no need to automate a test just for the heck of it should the same can be done effectively at a lower cost through manual testing. However, from a long term perspective, test automation can accrue significant cost savings should it be planned and executed with the right support.


# Test execution in real user conditions: A mobile user may encounter several conditions while operating the app – out of network, low memory, and high user traffic etc. Hence, such conditions should be considered during mobile application testing wherein various functional requirements are tested.

# Test reporting: The test management tools should be such that they generate suitable error reports in the form of a dashboard. The same should be made available to every stakeholder for the latter to understand and analyse the reports.


With mobile apps becoming a significant part of the users’ digital activities, they should be functional and responsive at all times. To ensure their functionalities meet the user expectations, mobile app functional testing should be conducted by considering all elements, requirements, and conditions.

See more Functional Testing Resources on EuroSTAR Huddle.

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About the Author


Hemanth Kumar Yamjala has 10+ years of experience in IT Services, predominantly Marketing, Branding, specializing in Digital. Currently a part of the marketing for Cigniti Technologies with functions such as leveraging digital marketing channels for lead generation and promotion.
Find out more about @hemanth-yamjala

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