Mobile Phones Rise and What It Means for Testers

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Whether we want to go to a movie, book an air ticket, browse for shopping products – mobile phones are everyone’s go-to. Some may see mobile usage as a burden to a healthy life. Yet, others find it as a complement to their everyday activities. 

Mobile fever is definitely not hard to spot. A common man can observe the rising use of mobile phones. It is a common routine for people to keep their phones around while sleeping, to receive any emergency call. From small children to adults, games on mobiles have had people hooked. Frequently checking emails and social networks on mobile phones gives people a stronger sense of identity. For others, mobile phones become a support system for controlling their anxieties. When someone loses their phone, they panic, as to losing access to their contacts and confidential information. In the worst situation, they might get stranded on their travel or commute, if the mobile phone was the only tool they were depending on for navigation support. It is not surprising to hear of someone using a mobile phone from their bathroom.

Jian Fang, General Manager of HdtMedia, says the smartphone era has made it difficult for workers to draw distinctions between work and life outside of work. Guan Herong, Social Media Director of AdMaster is in a dilemma, believing both that smartphones can enhance work efficiency or become a distraction source.

Good or bad, mobile phones are here to stay. A 2016 report by Statistica Research Department shows the estimated number of mobile phone users from across the globe for the years 2015 to 2020. In 2019, the number of mobile phone users is estimated to reach 4.68 billion, which is 62% of the world population. Most of this growth comes from the use of smartphones. 38% of all mobile users of 2014 were smartphone users. According to Statista, in 2018, 52.2% of worldwide website traffic was generated from mobile phones. According to TechJury, 66% of smartphone users are addicted to their phones.

What do these observations and glaring statistics convey to software developers and testers? In the face of the mobile phone phenomenon, are businesses prepared to deliver mobile-friendly web pages? As businesses design their web pages, they simply cannot limit their target audience to users of personal computers. Businesses must design web pages that can be used on mobiles and tablets. Also, they must employ responsive testing solutions to thoroughly test the web pages for compatibility with mobile platforms. There is no point in delivering a product that fails to perform.

Responsive testing solutions take care of the entire layout of the webpage to ensure its compatibility on the mobile device. Testers will check if images are optimized for the mobile screen size. They will ensure navigation is easy for the user to access the content. Testers will aid developers in tailoring content suitable for mobile pages. In short, testers will remove all frustrations mobile users are likely to have with a static web page design. With the ever-increasing reliance on mobiles, testers will have to continuously test web pages, and find novel ways to make better responsive web pages.

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