Mobile Testing Challenge: Real Device Testing or Emulators?

18 September 2017 1130


Have you ever left an online store after encountering a sudden crash or bug? The answer is most likely yes and you are certainly not alone.


In a growing global market, you might never get a second chance to leave a first impression to customers. This is why mobile testing is crucial to any company who wants to remain competitive on the global market.


Not only is it important to maintain the integrity of your ecommerce system, but to also recognize the value of testing it in order to prevent errors and ensuring that your users undergo a comfortable experience.


A short delay of only half a millisecond page load time can cause your visitor to head to your competitor. Performance is a driving factor for increasing conversions and revenue, which shouldn’t be overlooked.


This way you can test everything throughout the entire purchase process, from start to end. By documenting errors, testing the same functions on different devices and browsers, you will uncover what issues cause shopping cart abandonment and make sure your checkout process is secure and runs smoothly.


Real Device Testing


Real device testing is exactly what it sounds like, performing tests on a real device. This allows you to test every aspect of the mobile version and find out what works and what doesn’t – which is probably its greatest advantage. You can test user login, browser compatibility, page display, usability, transactions, international language and more.


Does the mobile responsive site perform as well on iPhone 6 as it does on the Samsung Galaxy S6? If the mobile design resolution delivers the same quality on different touch screens and if not, does it affect the user experience? These are just some questions that real device testing answers, which is the only true way to understand the user experience to its fullest.


While emulators can also test many features, only real device testing is adequate enough to test the final product. Emulators can test sensors with limitations. Testing push notifications, Geo-location and other functions can only be performed with real device testing.


Testing on real devices is very reliable, taking into account the size of the screen, CPU, memory and more for the given device.


Testing on real devices is more expensive compared to emulators, but their investments will bring you high ROI as a result.


There is a wide range of devices to work with (Apple, Samsung and so on) so it’s important to think in advance who are your users and what kind of devices are the most valuable for your store.That’s why it’s a good idea to outsource this work to someone who have the resources and experience in such kind of testing.





As opposed to real device testing, an emulator is a software program which offers the same functionality as the real mobile device. They are usually free or not so expensive to download and the testing can start immediately.


Emulators are mostly used when the testers need to test the internal behavior of the mobile device like its firmware and other components. They are also used for debugging purposes.


Unfortunately, there are things that an emulator can’t catch while a person doing real device testing can, simply because the emulator isn’t programmed to the closest degree of human behavior.


Another disadvantage is that in some cases the emulator may not support certain applications and software patches need to be purchased – which can be expensive.


Just remember that emulators will never show you 100% of the issues that you could have on the same real device.For example, we had experience with iPhone 6, in which the entire functionality was working properly in an emulator, however we were able to detect a bug on a real mobile device. And a big part of the store users were using an iPhone 6, which saved not only time and money but our clients nerves as well!





Pre-launch testing is vital in order to prevent the chances for your product to be recalled. In order to stay competitive on the global market, testing will help you set strong standards and quality.


Mobile designs that have been physically tested (real device testing) will perform better than ones tested only by emulators. Testing on real devices offers straight results, without any false or positive negatives.


Here at Opsway, we understand the value of delivering the most accurate results, and for that reason, provide only real device testing services to our customers. Real device testing is inarguably a continuation of the mobile development process which shouldn’t be overlooked no matter how many updates and improvements are made to emulators or to Android’s code base. So when will you choose to test your store with a real device?

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