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Testing your Application for Foldable Devices

by 1lyQA Team

There was a lot of hype when the first foldable smartphone was launched. After Samsung released Galaxy Z Fold in 2019, a new trend appeared in the market, pushing modern smartphones and tablets out of the game.

If you are also looking to keep up with the latest trend of “Foldables,” it is a great time to explore development and app testing for foldable devices.

App testing for foldable devices

Foldable smartphones are the next-generation smartphones. It helps you to create unique experiences for consumers and new business opportunities to drive innovation. The foldable apps are mainly focused on larger screens and provide a handy experience when folded. According to a new analytical report (Strategy Analytics), global foldable smartphone shipments will hit 100 million units by 2025. The research has also confirmed that foldable technology will be one of the fastest-growing segments of the premium smartphone market in the next decade. Foldables are considered the smartest inventions of the era. They allow the users to fold the mobile screens when it is not in use, thus dramatically improving user interactions.

In this article, you will explore:

  • What are foldable devices?
  • Why is it worth building apps for foldable devices?
  • Why is app testing for foldable devices important?
  • Key requirements for foldable apps development
  • Key features to consider for app testing for foldable devices
  • Recommended test scenarios for foldable apps
  • Getting started with Foldables

Let’s dive right into the guide to explore everything you need to know about foldable devices and preparing your apps for the foldable development market.

What are foldable devices?

Foldable smartphones come with a special display that can be folded in half, just like a sheet of paper. Samsung unveiled the concept in 2019 to offer high-end flexibility benefits to users.

Potentially, these devices provide an immersive user experience, more space to watch content, browse the internet, read, and many more functionalities. You can easily multitask with 2/3 multi-windows when unfolded. Also, the foldability factor makes the device highly convenient for transportation. Since foldable devices are the future of the mobile world, it is the right time to delve into the development and app testing for foldable devices. 

Why is it worth building apps for foldable devices?

Mobile phones have changed drastically through the last few years, from flip phones to QWERTY phones to touchscreens. And now, foldable devices have taken over the conversations. This new style of devices provides more space and comfort and offers more screen real estate, true streamlining of workflow, and more versatile use of apps. 

While the studies indicate steady growth and sales, foldable devices have gained the immense interest of consumers. Another source indicated that the foldable smartphone industry is expected to grow at a CAGR rate of more than 21.3% from the year 2021-2026. These statistics point towards the fact that – foldable devices are the future of the mobile phone industry. With foldable devices on the roll, the app developers need to put extra effort into launching and run foldable applications successfully.

The evolution of mobile devices for foldable phones

Why is app testing for foldable devices important?

Apps play a major role in our lives. On average, people spend 74% of their smartphone screen time on mobile time. And more importantly, over 50% of all internet traffic comes from mobile apps. The success of foldable devices is directly affected by the quality of mobile apps. But the unique features and characteristics of the foldable screen present challenges for app developers. 

Bug-prone apps commonly plague Foldables mobiles due to fragmentation of screen and ultimately results in negative reviews. And any negative experience will be associated with the quality of mobile phones and not any specific mobile app. This is where you need efficient app testing for foldable devices. The key to testing apps on foldable devices is testing the functional and user experience-focused tests. 

Key requirements for foldable apps development

Since the popularity of foldable devices is increasing tenfold, it has become vital to consider improving practices for seamless mobile app experiences on foldable devices. Planning for mobile app development for a single screen is very different from mobile apps for foldable devices. Here are some important aspects to consider while developing and testing apps for foldable screens.

Infographics: Key considerations for the development and app testing for foldable devices

foldable phone device testing infographics

Key features to consider for app testing for foldable devices

Bigger screens, handy experiences, richer and immersive user experiences, multitasking with multiple widows, less power-hungry display, and more. Certainly, foldable smartphones offer a lot of opportunities. But planning for developing and testing mobile apps for foldable devices is quite different from single small screen devices. Let’s dig deeper into some of the most important features for mobile apps for foldable devices.

1. Continuity

App continuity issues are one of the major mobile app challenges for foldable devices. This feature is all about switching from one state to another based on the screen orientation. The mobile app needs to follow the continuity and offer a seamless user experience in both screen modes. The user should be able to easily switch from one mode to another without having to open the app again and again. Also, when they do that, the app should switch to the expanded screen without missing a beat. 

2. Resizability

The mobile apps should be compatible with smaller as well as larger screens essentially. The resizability factor must be considered at the time of app testing for foldable devices. Based on the type of fold and functionality of the smartphone, the mobile app designs and interface should also fit perfectly. Additionally, the shape and size of foldable devices should remain the same while consuming media through smartphones. 

3. Multi-Window Ability

With the multi-window feature, the users can run multiple apps at the same time. However, facilitating this feature can be tricky. Earlier, while using multiple apps on the same screen, only the active app runs while others would be paused. But with foldable devices, users can run multiple apps on the same screen at the same time. So, it is vital to consider the multi-window compatibility at the time of app testing for foldable devices. The mobile apps should be developed in a way that multitasking with different screens should be easy and seamless for the users. 

4. Support for Multiple Screens

The mobile app developers should always consider the compatibility with two or more screens at a time. The primary and secondary screen can be decided while developing the app, but it should resume to either of the screen sizes, the text as well as the configuration without any glitches. 

5. Multi-resume

Another important feature needed for mobile apps for foldable devices is multi-resume. The apps resume as per the user requirements when the screen is folded or unfolded. While the dual-display improves the efficiency, it creates many issues for the accessibility of features and functionalities of the mobile app. But if the app testing for foldable devices is conducted appropriately, your mobile app can seamlessly function in the multi-window mode without any glitches. 

6. Aspect Ratio

Since Apple has not yet entered into foldable devices, most of the phones in this segment are Android. And building mobile apps for Android phones comes with aspect ratio challenges. There are numerous mobile devices with different screen sizes. And the difficulties in the case of foldable devices increase drastically. The app testing for foldable devices should ensure that different aspect ratios are adjusted according to multiple devices. And most importantly, the quality of mobile apps must remain the same in multi-window mode. 

Recommended test scenarios for foldable apps

Before getting started with the mobile app development and testing for foldable devices, make sure you know the possible test scenarios that will stand your way. Let’s explore some scenarios of foldable apps and their expected Behavior. 

Test Case

Expected Behavior of mobile apps on foldable devices

  1. Launch of mobile app: Main display and cover display
  2. The app opens without any lag or crash
  3. Working with the keyboard on the cover and main display
  4. Types text in different languages, symbols, and everything shows up fine on both the displays.
  5. Working with the camera on the cover and main display
  6. The app opens the camera, shows the preview images and videos. The media is scaled and oriented properly.
  7. The transition between the main and cover displays: Layout of the screen
  8. The app is filled with the entire screen without any blank space and cut-offs.
  9. The transition between the main and cover displays: Runtime of mobile app
  10. The app switches without hanging, crashing or showing response errors.
  11. The transition between the main and cover displays: User interface and components and location
  12. Every component like menu, text, button, thumbnails are at the right location and maintain the right shape and size.
  13. The transition between the main and cover displays: Handwriting and drawing apps
  14. Drawing and edited state are maintained in drawing and handwriting apps while switching the displays.

Getting started with Foldables

Now when you know that foldable devices are taking over the technology world and bringing along many opportunities, it’s the right time to get started with your app for foldable devices. While this technology holds immense potential, it poses many challenges for development and testing teams. There are multiple factors and challenges to face when it comes to developing and app testing for foldable devices. If you are looking forward to launching a successful mobile app for foldable devices, QAonCloud can help you with fully managed mobile app quality assurance testing services. We deliver end-to-end solutions from consulting to execution to designs, development, launch, and maintenance of apps for foldable devices.

Contact us to learn more about app testing for foldable devices, specific test scenarios for your mobile app, recommended test plan, and more. Talk to our mobile app experts now.

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