I recently tumbled upon the statistic here ->. It led me to think, if marketing automation is going to take over humans, the amount of systems built is going to grow by the minute. As the information technology development trends keep changing, software testing trends too need an upgrade.
Gone are the days already for just a manual tester to be able to serve the testing needs in its entirety. The info-tech ecosystem has already witnessed DevOps.
So this is my attempt to forecast skills a software tester must have by 2020 to be competitive:
Testing Internet of Things (IoT)
Testing Internet of Things adds a new dimension to methodical software testing viz. testing of HARDWARE & SENSORS. A simple IoT device no longer needs just software testing but also relies on the tester for ensuring that hardware interfaces, network interfaces, user interfaces and sensors are tested thoroughly. The code-behind will be tested regardless.
Testing approaches can be borrowed from the existing parlance, however it is important that all 3 components are addressed. I believe one should possess skills of the following test variants while attempting for IoT:
- Regulatory Compliance Testing to ensure that the device conforms to regulatory policies. Certain tests like 508 Compliance can take a bit precedence here.
- Compatibility testing with the possible amalgamation of device versions, protocol versions, mobile devices and mobile OS version.
- Performance engineering that deals in how quickly the device responds to user actions. It involves testing latency in connectivity etc.
- Security testing that encompasses authenticity, availability and authorization.
- Quick Exploratory testing to test from the end user’s perspective without any pre-documented test procedures
Testing Data Analytics and Big Data
Big Data has already demonstrated its penetration in 2017 and it is here to grow. By 2020, we can safely expect this domain to grow by a phenomenal 400% from where it is now. Given the cost of data storage going lower by the day, Big Data will eventually be a day to day affair for every Information Technology company.
Today, we are concerned about testing data storage, management and maintenance of Big Data with little worry about testing the inferences drawn. Come 2020, the analytics and testing it will gain much more momentum as compared to anything else.
In todays date, testing analytics and inferences usually involve:
- Report Object Validation
- Report Validation
- Dashboard Validation
- Mobile Report Validation
- Visualization Validation
Testing Enhanced Mobile Payments and its Security
A classic global example of sudden surge in mobile payments is INDIA. On 8th Nov 2016, the government announced demonetization of 2 major currency notes worth Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000. This led to sudden use and dependency of mobile payments. Players like Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Paytm, Freecharge, JioMoney, PayZapp and many similar became overnight successes.
Slowly and steadily, I am sure developing countries will adapt the trend of accepting payments wirelessly. There are numerous benefits to the same, the best being, its way more convenient than its predecessors.
With increase in Mobile Payments, there has to be definite increase in the systems build and maintained. Security being the most crucial part of this development, I feel the following points are of utmost skills a tester must have:
- Understanding the threat models of different systems. A detailed article by European Union Agency For Network and Information Security can be downloaded from here
- Understand and Test Cryptographic Keys across the payment process
- Rise of Social Engineering and hacking way into users mobile wallets
- Human Errors and how to identify / reduce those for dealing with mishandling of sensitive data
Artificial Intelligence & Advanced Machine Learning Testing
Artificial Intelligence brings a multitude of futuristic developments in the information technology domain. The best part is, systems developing more systems. Buzzwords like machine learning, neural systems, natural language processing etc have taken centre stage already.
In banking, you could use AI and machine-learning techniques to model current real-time transactions, as well as predictive models of transactions based on their likelihood of being fraudulent. Organizations seeking to drive digital innovation with this trend should evaluate a number of business scenarios in which AI and machine learning could drive clear and specific business value and consider experimenting with one or two high-impact scenarios.
Source : https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/gartners-top-10-technology-trends-2017/
With such examples a tester must understand the software testing trends of these technologies and define challenging test scenarios to ascertain and validate the outcomes. Also, testing such systems will require building systems that test themselves. Hence its a recursive test regime.
Thank you for reading the article.
To summarize, the software testing trends are ever-changing and ever-growing. If you feel there is something that I have missed out, feel free to write the same to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or comment here below. I would be obliged to add it to the blog.