Testing the application made for Android/iPhone can be a real nightmare for developers. There are many models and types of Android/iPhone smart devices and it is very hard to ensure that the application will run without having problems on various hardware, various screen sizes and various OS version.

To ensure that application will work correctly, the developers/testers has few options:

  • Buy many smart devices and test the application on real them – this is a very expensive way
  • Use a simulator or emulator
  • Use an online service for testing

This time I will check out the iPhone simulator and Android emulator
First of all, we have to make difference between the simulator and the emulator.
Emulators mimic the software and hardware environments found on actual devices.
Simulators, only mimic the software environment; they otherwise have access to all of the host system’s hardware resources such as disk space, memory and processor speed.

iPhone simulator:

One of the most used simulator is Xcode. You can download it from this link: https://developer.apple.com/xcode/index.php
Some of the key features of the application:

  • Assisted Source Code Editing – checks your source code as you type it
  • Graphical UI Design – an integrated visual design editor – Interface Builder
  • Integrated Debugging and many others

This simulator can be installed only on MAC.

Android emulator:

There are many emulators for android. Just type “android emulator” into the Google and you will find many solutions. One of them is the Android SDK.
The Android SDK includes a virtual mobile device emulator that runs on your computer. The emulator lets you prototype, develop and test Android applications without using a physical device.
After you download all the needed libraries, you can setup the configuration for what you want to start testing.
You can download it from here:http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html.
The positive side of the Android SDK that it is completely free and you can choose more OS versions to test on.
The negative side of the Android SDK is that it is slow(other emulators are slow, too). It is possible to speed-up the emulator, but this require advanced settings.

If you are not familiar with setting/installing the Android emulator/iPhone simulator, the best solution is to choose an online service for testing.
Next time I will test some online services for smart device testing.

    One Response to “Android/iPhone application testing – simulator/emulator”

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