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Importance of Interrupt Testing on mobile applications

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By anandguptatal December 12, 2017

Introduction:

Many-a-times I face problems that happens due to interruption on mobile application. But have you guys ever wondered why these problems happen?

In this blog, let’s discuss the below topics to understand interruptions, its impact and how mobile applications can handle such interruptions.

What is interrupt testing on mobile applications?

Interrupt testing is performed to evaluate the behavior of a mobile application after interruptions are applied while using the application.

Below are a few common scenarios of interruption while using a mobile application:

  • Putting the application into the background
  • Getting a phone call
  • Getting a message on WhatsApp or other similar message apps
  • Phone going into sleep mode
  • Phone auto-locked
  • Alarm

What is the impact of interrupts on mobile application?

Normally, no action is taken until an interruption problem leads to undesired consequences. Let’s try to understand interruption testing impact with below examples:

Example 1:

  1. While performing an online transaction, the application asks for the One Time Password (OTP).
  2. You minimize the application to check the OTP message.
  3. After checking the OTP when you open the application, your transaction fails.

Example 2:

The Low battery pop-up appears when your transaction is being processed and transaction fails after you dismiss the pop-up.

How can we prevent mobile applications from interrupt failures?

To avoid interruption problems in mobile applications, we should test the applications against various types of interrupts such as minimizing the application, receiving phone calls etc. We should test interruptions on various screens of the app to ensure if the interruption is handled properly.

I have prepared one interrupt checklist for mobile applications that includes all the scenario in very organized manner.

You can refer checklist to test your application’s behavior against various interruptions.

You can access the complete checklist here

Following is one test scenario from the checklist:

Category Priority Interrupt Steps Expected result Status
Home Key
Interrupt
High Restore the App by Tapping on App icon.  1. Press home key to
minimize the application.
2. Wait for few seconds.
3. Tap on app icon to restore the application.
  1. App should behave
in same way as
Before interrupt.
2. App should not
Restart/crash.
Pass

NOTE: Please feel free to share if any scenario is missing or difficult to understand.


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