What Build 2015 Means for Testers

Mobile Testing  at Microsoft Build 2015I recently wrote about numerous ways through which Windows 10 affects testers. With Build 2015 over with, we now know more specifically how the new OS will affect testers.

Android and iOS Mobile Testing for Windows

Microsoft has made a strong attempt to woo android and iOS developers with Build 2015. With windows 10, Microsoft has included an android and IOS runtime layer that makes it possible for developers to launch existing Mac and iOS Apps unmodified on Windows 10.

The friction for developing Windows apps is drastically reduced, but this poses just additional challenges for testing. Recently I wrote about how mobile testing is still done manually. With another operating system (Windows 10) now added to the mix, reusability of automated scripts across different platforms becomes even more critical.

Additionally, having ability to record multi-touch gestures such as pinch and swipe across one phone and then replaying these gestures across iOS, Windows, and Android devices could come in handy.

Office Graph API and All Possible Integration

With Office Graph API, Microsoft has provided developers numerous add-in frameworks to build integrations with their existing products office products, i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or Outlook. Take the example of Evernote that allows you take notes for any upcoming appointments. Now developers would be able to sync those notes to Outlook easily and quickly given the add-in framework.

The same business case would work the other way around. Any changes made to outlook need to get reflected in Evernote as well. A key challenge for testers here would be to not only be test the Office API works fine for the right request and response, but also ensure that the Graphical User Interface (GUI) of an application provides appropriate response when the API changes or when it doesn’t work. For instance, in case of Evernote, one of the critical things to test could be what happens to the GUI when API passes the wrong information or when it’s not available.

Free Multi-Language Code Editor for Mac and Linux

Great news for testers who use Mac and Linux to build automated scripts. Microsoft released Visual Studio Code, a lightweight cross-platform code editor with support for modern languages such as JavaScript, TypeScript, and Node.js. Another reason to try the free code editor would be availability of features such as syntax highlighting and customizable keyboard bindings.

Microsoft Edge: Project Spartan now finally has a name. It’s called as Microsoft Edge. Internet Explorer is getting replaced by Microsoft Edge, a leaner and a much faster version. Microsoft Edge is powered by a new rendering engine. Unlike Internet Explorer that was driven by Trident (MSHTML.dll), Microsoft Edge has EdgeHTML.dll as the rendering engine.

Additionally, with Microsoft Edge, Microsoft has dropped support for VBScript. Microsoft’s unwillingness to invest in VBScript essentially means that VBScript is becoming less relevant and it is absolutely essential for testers and automation engineers to invest time in learning modern scripting languages. On the flip side, automation testing vendors too need to move away from VBScript and provide support for other modern scripting languages.

Also, with Microsoft Edge, Microsoft recently spoke about its commitment to Selenium WebDriver. John Jansen, who is Principal Software Engineering Lead at Microsoft, mentioned that Microsoft is invested in Selenium WebDriver and is currently in the process of figuring out the details. With other major browser vendors already putting their weight behind WebDriver, Microsoft’s commitment signifies that we can expect automated testing using Selenium WebDriver to continue growing.

Testing for Mobile Payments on Windows 10

Windows 10 users will have a new way to buy stuff on internet. It’s called carrier billing. Across all windows devices, instead of punching their credit and debit card details, consumers can just submit their phone number to confirm any transactions. The purchase is then added to the phone bill. Boku is an example of a firm that provides such services. When making a purchase on mobile, this form of payment can come in really handy as it eliminates friction associated with traditional forms of payment. Thus, in addition to ensuring payments for credit and debit cards work as expected, testers have to write test cases for this new form of payment.

Unlike previously, Microsoft is definitely showing a lot of openness to other platforms and developing an ecosystem through numerous integrations. Right from opening up opening its office software to allowing developers use existing Android and iOS Apps on Windows 10, Microsoft has indeed come a long way. Testers however need to be better prepared to reduce the effort that might be incurred while testing these new integrations.

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