With the phenomenon of digitization taking over pretty much everything, the airline industry is no exception. One of the most evident examples that highlight this change is how many airlines now have their digital app to interact with their customers. One does not need to go to a browser and open different travel websites to book a ticket, as you can straight away do so with an airline’s digital app.
An airline app is quite different from your regular apps, as it involves a lot of actions that are offered based on customer’s needs, like booking tickets, checking fight status, raising grievances and many more. In a nutshell, it is a hugely customer-centric application and therefore needs to go through a well-planned testing process, before it is released to the public.
In this article, we will first take you through some of the major features that should be there in an airline digital app for it to be successful and then tell you the tests and things to keep in mind while testing such an app.
What are the key features that an Airline Digital app should have?
Flight booking – The most important and obvious feature has to be that of booking a flight. This is the biggest revenue-generating feature and therefore has to be spot on. It involves a step-by-step process, where the customer fills in the details, books a flight and makes the payment through a credit or debit card or saves it in a cart to pay later. Furthermore, there should be provisions to buy extra seats, insurance and other such add-ons.
Manage reservations – There are times when the user wants to update their data or buy additional seats or baggage area once the reservation is done. Shifting of the travel dates, changing in the seat-class or cancellation of the tickets are some of the other functions that should be available under this feature to give a better experience to the customer.
Check-in – Gone are the days when passengers used to stand in line to check-in, as now there is the provision of the web check-in. Therefore, providing this feature in your airline digital app would make it a lot more user-friendly.
Flight Status and Watch – This is a simple but a very useful feature, which allows the user to have a clear idea about the status of their flight and other flights if need be. Additionally, having live information of all the flights from an airline will surely help the customer book tickets, in case of an emergency.
Loyalty Program – Most airlines have a loyalty program to help the passengers have a great time. There are reward points for the number of air miles you complete, which you can exchange for various benefits. Providing a feature in the app where the customers can access all the related information will be a huge help for them.
Customer Service Chat Box – This is one of the most important features of an airline digital app, as it lets you directly connect to your customer in real time. You should have a customer service team that resolves the customer’s grievances and queries on the go.
Push Notifications – Push notifications help the customers get timely reminders of everything related to their flights and the discounts or other offers that the company is providing. This also helps in encouraging the customer to use the app more often.
Integration with device sensors – An airline digital app should have the capacity to integrate with a smartphone’s device sensors like camera, location sensor, accelerometer and others to give the customer a smooth experience. For example, he/she can use the camera to scan the barcode of the ticket to get all the information they require.
Augmented Reality (AR) – This is a feature that many airline digital apps have been trying to incorporate in recent times to give the user a better experience. For example, once you enter a flight, you just need to open the camera through the app and it will highlight your seat, saving you time you’d otherwise spend to find the seat by searching the seat number. You can use many more creative ways to integrate AR technology with such an app.
What are the tests that need to be done for an Airline Digital App?
Going through some of the top features seen in an airline digital app, you must have got an idea of how versatile it is in terms of the features involved. As a result, it must undergo several testing processes before it is safe to release to the public.
In fact, it has to be under constant testing even after the release to maintain its functionality. Here, we list some of the most important tests that must be done for an airline digital app.
Unit Testing – It is the type of testing where each component of an app is tested and this is particularly important for such an app that involves such varied features, independent of each other. It requires detailed knowledge of the programming codes and may require developing test driver modules or harnesses.
Integration Testing – As mentioned above, such an app has a lot of integrations with features outside of the app, like the camera, GPS and APIs and so on. Therefore, performing an integration test is necessary to check if the functions are still working or not after the successful integration of such factors.
Interface Testing – As an airline digital app is hugely dependent on the user experience, you must perform an interface test. Furthermore, it also involves payment gateways, which means that API testing too is a must in such apps. For this, you can use automation tools, which the professional testers will know how to use.
Functional Testing – It is a test that only focuses on how the functions of the application performs and does not check for the technical side of things. It falls under black-box testing and uses special tools, which throws the app in real user-case scenarios to test whether the app works the way it was intended to be. Quick check-ins, live access to flight status and responsive live chats are some of the features that should be checked in here.
Performance Testing – Here, you need to perform load and stress testing continuously to see if the app can manage to deliver good performance even when there is a huge load of users. The app should continue to work even during peak flight hours, when thousands of users will be on the server at the same time.
Security Testing – Airline apps are common targets of hackers around the world and hence it is absolutely necessary to run a thorough security test of the app before it is released. With passengers’ sensitive data stored in the app’s database, you just cannot afford to lose it due to a lack of security in your app. Efficient test cases will have to be used for this, for which you need professional testers.
Things to keep in mind while testing an Airline Digital App
While testing such an app that deals with daily traffic of users and a huge cycle of data-flow, you should ensure that you test the app continuously. You will have to make it an ongoing process, with several test automation cases involved to ensure the quality of the app remains constant. With concurrent visitors to the app, there is no other way to maintain the robustness of such an app. Furthermore, a risk-based approach should be taken to create test cases. The potential errors and the financial impact it can have on the business should always be kept in mind.
Another important thing to keep in mind is to know when to seek professional help from an external source. Going through the kind of features that customers expect to see in an efficient airline digital app and the kind of testing processes involved, you must have got an idea of how it is a job for experts.
Outsourcing the testing will ramp up the process and will also let you focus on the business side of things. Furthermore, since it will be an ongoing process, it makes perfect sense to have a separate team dedicated for this service.
To get the best testing services for your airline digital app, get in touch with TestUnity, a company that has been in the software testing industry for multiple years now and has a team of professional testers from around the world to assist them with projects.