BY RICK ROBINSON
Don’t look now, but buggy software and a lack of quality assurance are chewing away at your profits—right under your nose.
Yes, of course, there are deadlines, development costs and impatient customers who want their apps and want them now. In the mobile development world, excuses like these are the only things easier to find than buggy software apps.
But don’t kid yourself. Most of your customers don’t know what goes on behind the scenes, and they will not thank you for cutting corners on quality assurance. Not when they’re stuck outside in the rain and the app they needed has slowed to a crawl or has ceased to stop working due to an OS update. If you’re lucky, they’ll just curse out the pigeons around them. Most likely, though, they’ll go looking for a better team to make their app, all the while telling their friends, “Stay away from that studio!”
SO WHAT IS QUALITY ASSURANCE, ANYWAY?
Bugs are facts of life in the software world, as every beginning programmer finds out when his or her code stubbornly sits there and refuses to run. The more experienced the programmer and more sophisticated the software, the more devilishly ingenious the bugs. Any bug can make an app just sit there. The cleverest, though, show up only when they can cause the most trouble, or produce output that looks right—until it leads you to an address in the wrong side of town.
When most people think of Quality Assurance they think of a pit of testers hired off the street to tap on a phone. This is far from it. The quality of the application is the responsibility of the entire team. From the Project Manager to the UX Designer to the iOS Developer to the QA Lead; everyone is responsible for assuring the quality in their own way.
Testing your application is vital for every project and it is the responsibility of the QA team to identify, analyze and report bugs early and often. A unique array of automation, ad-hoc, focus testing, UAT, performance testing and test case execution will assure that your app is getting those 4 and 5 stars reviews.
NO, QA DOES NOT JUST HAPPEN
Effective, thorough QA does not happen by accident. All too often, it doesn’t happen at all.
Testing itself isn’t hard, it’s just hard to do well. And in order to get the biggest bang for your buck you can’t just hire any external QA team and expect your worries to go away.
As your mechanic has probably explained, you can pay now or pay later. And dedicating yourself to an experienced QA team the first time around is so much faster and cheaper—just like having that tire with the slow leak replaced before it leaves you stranded on the side of the highway. Your customers won’t thank you for it, because they won’t know. But they will be happier, leave a good review and come back for seconds (and thirds, etc.)—and isn’t that
Chaos Theory is a Chaotic Moon Studios publication. We are a creative technology studio in Austin, TX obsessed with creating innovative user-centered design and developing intelligent custom software for the world’s biggest and best brands. To engage us about a potential project, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org