Quality Assurance Testing for Mobile Websites

Before you launch a new site intended for the iPhone and iPad, always fully test its design and functionality on the iPhone or iPad, to ensure that the site looks and works the way you think it should. Using a simulator is never a substitute for completing a final checklist on a physical device.

As part of your final test, it's recommended that you complete these tasks:

  • Review every page and test every function.

  • Submit every form, look at every image, and click every link.

  • Test the device indoors and outdoors, in both bright and dim lighting.

  • Test in Portrait and Landscape modes.

  • Test in the car (when you’re a passenger) and on a bus or train. (Each environment provides a somewhat different perspective on the places and situations where visitors may view your content.)

  • Test your site on older iPhone versions (such as versions 1, 2, and 3) and on the most recent iPhone to see how your site looks on older devices.

  • Examine how your images and videos and other media types look on the faster iPad and higher-resolution iPhone 4.

Although they seem to offer the simplest option for testing mobile web designs, most simulators that work within a web browser suffer from two major limitations:

  • They run on your computer: Your computer almost certainly has a much faster processor and many other capabilities you don’t find on mobile phones.

  • They display desktop, rather than mobile, versions of a site: Unless you’re using a User Agent Switcher, all you’re doing is opening the desktop version of a site in a small window within a web browser.

Indeed, in recent testing of the sites iPhone Tester and TestiPhone.com, they were found almost useless because of their inability to properly render pages as an iPhone. These sites are no longer recommended.

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