|Friday, December 19, 2014

Making it easier to produce better apps 

KUALA LUMPUR: Mobile application developers should ensure that their apps work as intended and provide a common user experience no matter what platform or device the software are being used on.

But more often than not, this is not the case, said Jeff Findlay, senior solutions architect at Micro Focus, which provides software and consultancy services for clients updating legacy systems to more modern platforms. He said this is because there are just too many computers and mobile devices with different operating systems. And also because apps developers often work in a time constrained environment and have a limited budget to test everything.

 

“The Android platform alone has 910 combinations of various software and hardware while iOS and BlackBerry have more than 240 and 180 variants, respectively,” Findlay said. So, to help make the app-testing process more manageable, faster and affordable, the Britain-based company has introduced an application-testing and management solution – Silk Mobile – into the global market.

 

The solution is designed to provide an easy to use and comprehensive approach to functional testing of applications on real mobile devices, supporting broad mobile OSes including Android, iOS, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Symbian and HTML5.

 

With strong native, text, and image recognition, Silk Mobile lets customers build robust, repeatable and maintainable mobile application test suites, he said. “It is easy to use too because it’s visual.” Users can record tests directly from the mobile device and visually create, playback, and edit to add logic to test scripts in broad choices of scripting languages, including Borland’s Silk4j, Silk4Net, jUnit, nUnit, C#, MSTest, Python and Perl.

 

Another important aspect of the solution is that it also supports today’s widely-used touch interface features. Gone are the days of the mouse and keyboard being the only input devices customers need to test against; Silk Mobile supports multitouch, swipe, drag and drop, zoom and scrolling, Findlay said. A Silk Mobile licence costs about US$3,000 (RM9,000) per year and the solution runs on the Windows operating system.