In the last couple of months I was asked by several people how I improve my mobile testing skills. The mobile world is changing quite fast and you have to keep the pace, if you want to be a good and up to date mobile tester.
I recommended to read lots of QA related blogs, read QA books, follow the right people on twitter, try new mobile testing tools at home or at work (if you have the time) to get a broader knowledge in the mobile area. Another thing I recommended was to do new things (be creative while testing), try new testing techniques or just try to break the app in a crazy way. Furthermore I recommended another way of improve the own skills. Use as many apps as possible from different categories to see how apps are developed and how they behave. Besides using them, the important thing is, check the update texts of the apps! Do not just install the latest version of the app, read before installing the app. Some app developers are really precise in what the new version of the app is all about. Which nasty bug was fixed, which new feature is developed and so on.
If there are bug fixes described, don’t install the new version, instead try to reproduce the bug and see how to get this bug to life!
Here are some examples of apps that descibed very well, what was fixed:
Crashes on special devices
Fix crasher on some Android 4.3 devices and x86 devices. Try to get an device with Android 4.3 and try to crash it :)! See which category is forcing the close of the app.
Before I saw that update text, I never thought about testing an app with different keyboards. But since there are many different keyboard apps available you have to keep that in mind while testing.
If your app provides a widget, be sure it works and is not freezing, consuming to much battery.
Check the performance of an app. Apps must be fast and reliable.
Login and payment
If your app provide a login or has a payment process, these features MUST work 100% because they are business critical! Be sure that those features are well tested!
Use only those permissions you really really need for the app, otherwise people will not install or use them!
I am doing this for quite some time now and I have to say it is really really useful to improve your skills in mobile testing. I am getting so many new ideas while reading those texts and while trying to reproduce those bugs.
The same should be done of course on all other mobile platforms ;).
Try it and have fun!