The Importance Of Cross-Browser Compatibility
These days, ensuring that your website or application is cross-browser compatible has become the mainstay for many businesses, if not all. And it is sensible too on why that’s the case. Running your website on quite one browser means catering to a bigger pool of potential customers, which brings in additional revenue for you. and therefore the term is comparatively simple to explain too: an internet site or application that runs on quite one browser.
But that’s not always the case. There are tons more to cross-browser compatibility than what meets the attention.
What is cross-browser compatibility?
There are several ways you’ll define cross-browser compatibility. the great news for us is that each one of these definitions shares commonalities. By combining all of them together, you finish up with a somewhat accurate definition in “the ability of an application or website to support web browsers in a uniform way.” But somewhat isn’t ok for us. to completely understand what cross-browser compatibility is, we’d like to understand what it isn’t.
Cross-browser compatibility isn’t the thought that an app or website will work identically on all browsers just because it’s impossible. If your app or website works in a uniform way on every browser, it means creating the same user experience, not an ideal one. Take full websites and compare them to mobile sites. Both allow users to possess identical user experiences but definitely not within the same way.
But the importance of cross-browser capability shouldn’t be ignored. The sheer number of individuals interacting online with businesses of all sorts has seen an explosion recently, especially during the pandemic. If you retain your specialization in one browser, you miss out on the many others on different ones. But an honest place to start out is to focus on the large three: Microsoft Edge on PC, Chrome on Android, and Safari on iOS.
Arming ourselves with this data, let’s check out what it takes to be compatible across multiple browsers.
What causes cross-browser issues?
You can generally trace the difference between browsers today back to the infamous “browser wars” that began within the 90s. And although some have adopted the foundations laid by Google’s Chrome, others like Safari and Mozilla Firefox are still worlds apart in terms of engineering. a number of these issues stemming from the 90s still exist today. Today, most developers are expected to run into these problems:
- Forced incompatibility, like that for U.S military websites that only ran on Internet Explorer and have only now been updated.
- The high amount of browsers across Operating Systems.
- Browser-related bugs.
- The transition to mobile. Moving to smaller screened devices makes for fewer input devices that make a totally different experience.
All of those problems make the roles of testers and QA technicians difficult too. Making applications and websites to supply the same experience, not a uniform one is required, right? How does this impact testing? does one need the same or a singular set of tests?
Challenges of testing cross-browser websites and apps
QA technicians don’t just face the aforementioned issues when testing cross-browser compatibility though. Those are just the foremost common ones. Logistical ones are another game entirely. one among these is computing power. Cross-browser testing means requiring powerful machines to run each and each browser on multiple operating systems and browser versions. And if you’re testing for mobile devices too, you’ve got a never-ending range to settle on from.
And this isn’t even considering the sheer volume of test iterations that are required. Just picture the set of tests needed for every browser then making one chicken feed to the appliance or the website. You’ll now be needed to run every set of tests everywhere again. this is often perhaps why the necessity for defect management tools is on the increase.
Testing cross-browser compatibility for your website
- First things first, developers got to be well-versed within the cross-compatible features which will be important to them. a number of these can be:
- Do I require my product to figure on legacy or uncommon browsers?
- Do I require my product to figure on cheap and/or outdated devices?
- Have I considered adding speech-to-text for accessibility?
- What qualifies as an “acceptable” user experience?
- What qualifies as a “reasonable” number of browsers?
After features come test plans. More specifically, QA technicians are required to check important features across browsers and operating systems. These technicians should also make a group of common tests that add up for his or her product. and maybe most significantly, they’re required to seek out a sensible thanks to executing these tests. this suggests that developers require a solid testing strategy.
Requirements for automation
Test automation and defect management tools for cross-browser capability testing have two roles. to start out off, it must store the test results for every test, and log results over time. this might quickly provide results across browsers and permit you to match them. Furthermore, it’ll show the results of the tests for each version of the website. Testers will have a literally written record of the results of each change. Questions like, “by moving that specific box did I break the format of the text around it?” and “if I changed the menu from a radial design to face, did I block the button from executing the items’ functions?” are often answered without wasting hours of a technician’s time.
Second, it must be able to detect errors within the tests themselves. The complexity of site and app design leads to an outsized volume of (often repetitive) tests. the small test changes over time cause many opportunities for errors to sneak in. For example, removing a button from one version without removing the associated test. Suddenly, the testing stops, and an individual has got to undergo the data to hunt out why. this is often exacerbated in tools where each browser needs its own test to be written.
Conversely, a self-healing test recorder can reminisce on previous results and learn for itself what went wrong. During this scenario, the testing either corrects itself or notifies a tester of exactly what and where the testing broke.
Need some help in checking your application’s cross-browser compatibility? We provide the testing services on-demand, serve with projects of any scale, and are ready to start with a few days’ advance notice. Choose to team up with a QA services provider like TestUnity. Our team of testing experts specializes in QA and have years of experience implementing tests with different testing software. Get in touch with a TestUnity expert today.