Apple released XCUITest, a native iOS testing framework, in 2015. By using a low-code approach, Apple aimed to improve the testing process overall while enabling automated testing of iOS apps. The XCUITest, a pre-existing testing framework designed for the formulation and implementation of UI tests, performance tests, and unit tests, is included in Apple’s IDE as XCode. It is based on XCTest.
It is significant to note that, Apple planned XCTest for internal software testing and XCUITest for external software testing, which is where the differences between the two tests reside. (External software testing, sometimes referred to as “black-box testing,” meaning that the emphasis is on the behavior rather than the underlying operation of the product.) As a result, neither API access nor application data are available to XCUITest.
The programming languages Swift or Objective-C are required by the test scripts for XCUITest. Today, developers often utilize XCUITest, which has become the de facto industry standard. However, a significant change is taking place that might affect your choice to utilize XCUITest. But first, come, let us look at some of the basics of XCUI testing framework.
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What is XCUI, and how does it work?
UI Testing in Xcode is referred to as XCUI. It is a UI testing automation tool made available by Xcode. Now, you must be thinking what is UI testing then? Why UI testing needs to be automated? Testing the user interface is known as UI testing.
The target element must typically be confirmed to exist before certain user actions may be taken on it. To confirm that the same behavior works across platforms, the identical UI testing scenario may be done numerous times on several platforms. Manually performing these tests is tedious and time-consuming. It goes without saying that regression testing is always necessary for every release. The program that assists in automating UI testing on iOS and OS X is called XCUI.
The test cases may be automated by coding or recording. Without directly affecting the project code, it replicates user behaviors while being outside of the program. Instead, it locates the desired element in the simulator and converts the command into an interaction by acting as a proxy over the application. Through the accessibility function of the system, XCUI locates the target element. XCUI cannot recognize an element on the GUI unless the developer makes it accessible. This implies that even if you can see the element on the GUI with your eyes, if the developer does not allow accessibility on it, you won’t be able to capture it with XCUI or take any actions on it during automation.
Through the XCTest framework, XCUI assists you in automating testing. Xcode has been integrated with this framework. It offers many classes and you can also locate the item, and carry out activities.
Benefits of XCUI Test Framework
Let’s look at some of the benefits that XCUI test framework has to offer. This segment of the XCUITest tutorial will go over a few advantages of the framework that make it perfect for testing iOS applications.
- The mobile market offers a variety of mobile test automation frameworks. The XCUITest framework is used by development teams to get quick and accurate feedback on code modifications.
- No installation is necessary since Xcode already has everything you need to start using XCUITest for mobile automation testing. You don’t need to install anything since it is already installed in Xcode.
- The reasons to utilize XCUITest for iOS app testing are highlighted in the information below.
- Collaboration is improved since testers as well as developers can write their test code in the same language thanks to XCUITest, which supports the native iOS language.
- The XCUITest framework works with the native iOS language, offering developers peace of mind while writing UI tests. It is written in Objective-C and Swift (the language used by Apple dev team). Additionally, XCUITest offers quicker test execution by only integrating, synchronizing, and synchronizing.
- UI testing-specific XCUITest framework makes sure that every Unit test and UI test succeeds flawlessly. As a result, tests developed using XCUITest are quicker, more trustworthy, and less unstable.
- Since XCUITest is closely tied to XCTest, it is possible to record the user interface in XCTest using the Xcode IDE. The Xcode UI test recorder allows the development of test code and UI recording, which testers may use as a starting point, make code modifications, and successfully build test cases.
- For automated application testing, the XCUITest framework enables Continuous Integration (CI). As a result, you can run XCUITest as a step in your CI process and get continuous feedback on actual end-user scenarios and device circumstances.
Best-practices that you must follow to benefit the maximum from XCUI test framework
In order to benefit the maximu from XCUI test framework, here are some recommended best practices that you must follow. Your test’s design, execution, and analysis will have no bearing on how well your XCUITest automation script works. The XCUITest guide’s discussion of key best practices can help you create more reliable and effective XCUITest automation suites.
- Make sure that what you are testing is to prevent constantly fixing test code when you convert a test case into a test script.
- Information regarding UI interactions, including application internals, is recorded by the UI test recorder. You may record a test interaction with your app’s UI using XCUITest’s built-in UI recording tools and save that interaction as source code.
- It could take a while for the view to completely load. As a result, you should never make an assertion without the view being present.
- User interactions like tap(), doubleTap(), and twoFingerTap may be specified in XCUITest (). You may provide a duration or both a duration and a dragging destination when using the press() method. There are four directional swipes (up, down, left, and right), a rotate() with velocity, and a pinch() with scale.
- To assist your team in adding additional tests, it is a good idea to develop a structure and guidelines.
- In addition to UI testing, you can do online accessibility tests for persons with disabilities by utilizing the UIAccessibility protocol. By doing this, you may increase the number of prospective customers.
How is UI testing different from Unit Testing?
The UI isn’t tested in unit tests. The majority of consumers engage with your software only via its user interface (UI). Unit tests are back-end tests; they may determine if a computation is accurate but cannot confirm that the results are presented to your user in an accurate manner.
Unit tests are quite basic and run close to the application’s source code. They include testing each class, component, or module utilized by your software’s distinct methods and functions. A continuous integration server may perform unit tests extremely rapidly and at a very low cost in general. The best method for a software developer to make sure that a unit-a component of an application-meets design specifications and functions as intended is unit testing. One of the most crucial aspects in selecting an application is quality. We all know how fast we may lose interest in an application if we often run into flaws in it. But once again, this is merely a question of preference. Assertions are created in such a manner that if they fail, the test will also fail. Assertions were first created for use in unit tests.
For test automation, the XCUITest framework is a fantastic solution. As a result, it is critical to perform XCUITest automation effectively. Scaling up Apple device laboratories is time-consuming and costly. As a result, it is critical to employ a true device cloud platform, such as LambdaTest, which avoids the bother of establishing an in-house device lab. Developers and testers can do XCUI testing on actual iOS devices at any time and from any location by using LambdaTest’s online device farm. LambdaTest is the world’s premier platform for test orchestration and execution. It enables users to do manual and automated web and mobile app testing with Selenium and Cypress on over 3000 browsers, operating systems, and real-world device combinations. Organizations may use LambdaTest to enable quicker developer feedback on code modifications and speedier go-to-market delivery. LambdaTest is trusted by over 500 organizations and 1 million+ users in over 130 countries.
Using XCTest to create UI tests is an extension of the same programming approach that is used to create unit tests. Overall, similar operations and programming approach are employed, with variances due to the underlying concepts of the UI testing APIs and how they function, as discussed in User Interface Testing.