ArticlesBeta TestingBeta Testing Tools

When beta testing your mobile app, you have a range of tools at your disposal to mix and match according to your needs. With tens and hundreds of beta testing tools, you might not know where to start. Just going through them to select which ones best suit your needs can be a chore on its own. We’re here to make the process a whole lot easier for you with the essentials you need to embark on your journey.

Here are the must-have beta testing tools for mobile apps:

 

 

Beta Testers Management Tools

 

beta testing tools

 

When you’re ready to go into beta, the first thing you need to do is find people who are willing and able to test your app. After you’ve defined how many testers you need and how to find them, you’ll need to organize their workflow and feedback.

 

Google Apps

 

The manual and free way to manage your beta testers. You can create a document template for your beta testers to fill out when providing feedback and sheets to record their contact and other identifying information.

With this approach, you’ll have to organize this process yourself.

  • Pricing: Free

 

Centercode

 

Centercode is a leading beta management platform that helps developers and companies build communities of potential beta testers, find the right testers for your app based on your target market, assign different tasks to different testers, collect detailed feedback and reports, and then analyze the results to gain more insights about your app.

 

UberTesters

 

Ubertesters is a platform of independent testers who are split into three categories: functional testing, usability testing, and localization testing. This allows you to select the most relevant people to test your app based on your objectives as well as monitor and manage them through their QA management tool.

The UberTesters UDID management process is manual, which might not be ideal for everyone.

  • Integrations: Unity, PhoneGap/Cordova, Xamarin, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $19 per month.

 

UTest/Applause

 

UTest is considered the world’s largest beta tester community with more than 250,000 testers. Applause lets you connect with those testers and manage them. It offers “in the wild” testing, which lets different testers with different devices, environments, and even locations test your app so that the beta testing process is as close to real world usage as possible.

With so many testers, you might face issues with consistency and quality of testers.

 

 

Beta Testing Distribution Tools

 

beta testing tools

 

You’ll also need a way to transmit your app to your testers. Here are the most commonly used tools for beta testing distribution.

 

Testflight

 

The most popular platform for distributing iOS mobile apps. Upload a beta build of your app, have it tested by up to 25 members of your team, and invite up to 2,000 external testers.

You can test up to 100 apps, internally or externally, all at the same time. The builds also remain active for 90 days after they’re uploaded.

  • Platforms Supported: iOS
  • Pricing: Free

 

Google Play Beta Testing

 

Android app testing directly through the Google Play Store. You can publish your beta builds straight to Google Play and roll it out to people immediately.

This offers flexibility by giving you three options to distribute your app, either by publishing it openly on Google Play and allowing anyone to access and test it, doing a closed beta and inviting people to test it through e-mails, or a closed beta for specific Google+ communities.

  • Platforms Supported: Android.
  • Pricing: Free.

 

Beta by Crashlytics (Fabric)

 

Fabric is a mobile app development suite that offers a total of 14 SDKs, including mobile app analytics, monetization, and beta distribution. You create a file that will allow you to automate your beta distribution process and make your builds available to everyone with one click.

  • Platforms Supported: iOS, Android.
  • Integrations: JIRA, Trello, Slack, GitHub, Bitbucket, Asana, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Enterprise plans on demand.

 

HockeyApp

 

A mobile app beta testing platform with services like crash reporting, user metrics, and beta distribution. Unlike other tools like Testflight, you can quickly upload your apps directly without a review process while still maintaining access to old versions.

You can invite testers, split them into multiple groups, and have full control over who can see or install the apps. HockeyApp doesn’t automatically collect UDID, so every tester has to first create their own account and register their device.

  • Platforms Supported: iOS, Android, Mac OS X, Windows.
  • Integrations: Visual Studio Team Services, fastlane, Bitrise, Greenhouse, and more.
  • Pricing: Free up to 10 apps. Paid plans vary between $30 to $500 per month as well as special enterprise plans.

 

TestFairy

 

TestFairy makes the process of distributing your apps very straightforward: one-step upload, invite your testers, and view the results and how your app is performing on different devices.

  • Platforms Supported: iOS, Android.
  • Integrations: JIRA, Trello, Asana, Slack, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Enterprises plans on demand.

 

buddyBuild

 

With buddyBuild, getting your app to your users is trivial. It completely manages your signing certificates and provisioning profiles. The beta tester experience requires clicking a link in an e-mail, registering once, and downloading the app, even if they’re not in your provisioning profile.
When ready, you can also submit your apps directly to the App Store or Google Play using buddyBuild.

  • Platforms Supported: iOS, Android
  • Integrations: JIRA, Bitbucket, GitHub, Trello, Slack, and more.
  • Pricing: Free up to 1 concurrent build. Paid plans vary between $79 to $1,179 per month. Enterprises plans based on demand.

 

Applivery

 

Applivery stands out because of how customizable it is in terms of distribution. It’s great for private beta testing for big corporates and enterprises who wouldn’t want to make their beta builds public in the app stores.

You can create fully customizable store-like distribution sites, and you can even create different distribution sites for different purposes, use your own domain names, select versions, colors, logos, and descriptions, and even choose to either make it public, password-protected or only available for registered users.

  • Integrations: JIRA, Slack, Google Analytics, fastlane, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at 99€ per month.

 

AppBlade

 

AppBlade is a deployment tool focusing on security. It lets you remotely install, uninstall, and update your apps on your testers devices. Not only can you secure your app and add a layer of encryption, you can also selectively remove apps or wipe entire devices from your dashboard.

This is also great if you want to restrict testing to a certain location.

  • Integrations: JIRA, GitHub, Unity, PhoneGap, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $1 per month per device.

 

 

Bug Reporting Tools

 

beta testing tools

 

Studies have shown that only 16% of users will try a failing app more than twice. So you want to make sure that your app is as bug-free as possible when you publish it. The only way to do so is to test it for bugs and make sure to fix them ahead of production.

Bug reporting tools help you find and record the bugs. They can also help you discover more insights by automatically providing useful metadata to help you identify problems quicker.

 

Instabug

 

Instabug is the top bug reporting tool for mobile apps. It provides the most useful metadata on the market and exceptional user support. It is also known for its “Shake to Send” feature, an intuitive user gesture that automatically activates bug reports from within the apps on which Instabug is installed.

With each bug report, Instabug automatically captures a screenshot that users can annotate by drawing on, blurring, and magnifying parts of it. Users can also attach further screenshots, voice notes, and screen recordings of the app to provide further context to their report. In addition, Instabug automatically sends detailed user data to developers, including the user steps needed to reproduce each bug, network request and console logs, and view hierarchy inspection.

  • Integrations: JIRA, GitHub, Slack Trello, Asana, Zendesk, Desk, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $41 per month.

 

BugSee

 

BugSee provides you with videos of user actions that lead to a bug or crash occurring. It also provides you with network traffic and console logs.

 

BugClipper

 

Just like BugSee, BugClipper allows your users to report an issue by recording their screen. It also provides bug reports with system info and insights that allow developers to pinpoint the exact issue.

  • Integrations: None.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $49 per month.

 

 

Crash Reporting Tools

 

beta testing tools

 

Compuware says that 62% of mobile users worldwide had experienced a crash, freeze, or error with an app. When crashes happen, you need to know why they happen and how to fix it.

Crash reporting tools provide you with the details that help you identify the cause of any crashes or errors, their frequency, how many users they have affected, and more so that you have the necessary insights to be able to fix it.

 

Crashlytics (Fabric)

 

A free and popular crash reporting tool. Crashlytics performs deep analysis of each and every thread to help make reading stack traces easier and faster.

It also offers a variety of plugins and integrations that help you customize the product based on your needs.

 

Instabug

 

Straightforward and detailed crash reporting. Whenever your app crashes, Instabug reports this with all the stack trace information on all the running threads. You can also use it to log your handled exceptions or errors even if it doesn’t crash the app.

With each crash report, Instabug captures a detailed report of the running environment, the different threads’ states, the steps to reproduce the crash, and the network request logs. All the data is grabbed automatically with no need for breadcrumbs.

Instead of viewing thousands of crashes one by one, you can view them aggregated into charts to help you get an overview on your app performance and how it changes over time.

  • Integrations: JIRA, GitHub, Slack Trello, Asana, Zendesk, Desk, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $41 per month.

 

HockeyApp

 

HockeyApp features search tools to help you find the root cause for an error (e.g. a specific OS version or device type).

It also allows you to show the users a pop-up window, asking them explicitly if they want to send the crash report or not, as some users might be worried about privacy.

  • Integrations: Visual Studio Team Services, fastlane, Bitrise, Greenhouse, and more.
  • Pricing: Free up to 10 apps. Paid plans vary between $30 to $500 per month as well as separate plans for enterprises.

 

BugSnag

 

Another crash reporting tool that it gives you full control over your dashboard by allowing you to create a customizable view of your application errors.

 

Sentry

 

Sentry lets you view code in stack traces, with source maps for JS, symbolication for iOS, and stack locals for Python bug tracking. It lets you understand the context that contributed to errors with tags and relevant information about your software, environment, and users. You can also submit optional custom data to provide extra context that is unique to your app.

It also offers issue graphs to help you understand the frequency, scope, and impact of errors and prioritize what needs to be fixed.

  • Integrations: Slack, JIRA, GitHub, Asana, Trello, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $29 per month.

 

 

User Feedback Tools

 

beta testing tools

 

In-app feedback tools have proven to increase user feedback by 750%, among many other useful benefits. To maximize this feedback, you need your testers to be encouraged to share what they think of your app, any problems they faced, and how they’d like to improve it, and make the process as seamless as possible.

 

E-mail

 

The oldest channel to collect feedback. Having your beta testers report feedback by e-mail is straightforward and free.

However, organizing these reports and applying them to a workflow is inefficient compared to using a specific tool for user feedback.

  • Pricing: Free.

 

Instabug

 

Instabug‘s in-app chats let you communicate with your users directly from within your app, with minimal effort for your users.

App store reviews shouldn’t be where your users report bugs or send you negative feedback, and Instabug’s in-app feedback has proven to reduce bad reviews by 80% by by offering a private channel to let your users talk directly to you and solve their issues.

  • Integrations: JIRA, GitHub, Slack Trello, Asana, Zendesk, Desk, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $41 per month.

 

Apptentive

 

Apptentive is one of the leading mobile app tools when it comes to app store ratings prompts and in-app surveys, which can be used to ask testers about specific features of your app.

 

HelpStack

 

HelpStack is an in-app customer support tool that lets users report issues from within the app and have relevant tickets created for each. You can embed your knowledge base articles in the form of in-app FAQs. It’s also open source, so you can completely customize it based on need to reflect the look and feel of your app.

  • Pricing: Free.

 

HelpShift

 

Helpshift is the leading in-app help desk in the gaming industry.

  • Integrations: Salesforce, Unity, PhoneGap, and Cocos2D-X.
  • Pricing: Free 21-day trial. Paid plans start at $225 per month.

 

UserVoice

 

Uservoice helps you build a data-driven product roadmap by turning large quantities of customer feedback (feature requests) into meaningful product insights.

It’s useful during beta testing to know what features your testers think should be part of your app, which has proven to increase customer satisfaction and consequently your app rating and reviews.

  • Integrations: Slack, SalesForce, HipChat, Visual Studio, and more.
  • Pricing: $45 per month per agent with limited functionality, $85 per month per agent for full functionality. Annual deals based on request.

 

ZenDesk Chat (Zopim)

 

ZenDesk is considered the world’s biggest customer service software, and with their newest acquisition ZenDesk Chat, formerly known as Zopim, it allows you to have live in-app chats. It’s great if you’re already a ZenDesk user so that you can integrate the tools together. It mainly targets enterprises and companies.

 

 

Project Management Tools

 

 

Project management tools are one of the most important beta testing tools, as they allow you to handle all of the feedback you’re getting from your testers. They allow you to store and manage feedback, with each one containing all relevant information, such as a summary, description, type, priority, resolution, and many more. Some even let you attach documents, pictures, voice notes, and videos. This would allow your team members to understand each piece of information reported in detail and prioritize which ones to handle or respond to first, if at all.

 

JIRA

 

In 2003, JIRA was originally built to track and manage feedback in software development, and since then has expanded to include many more applications. It has over 1,000 add-ons and extensions to customize it based on need.

JIRA is definitely the leading project management tool in terms of software development. It might be more costly and harder to get your team accustomed to. However, it’s definitely worth it as it offers so many more features than its competitors that would be very helpful during beta testing, including issue management, reporting, and time tracking.

  • Integrations: Instabug, Bitbucket, Slack, Zendesk, and more.
  • Pricing: Free 7-day trial. Plans start at $10 per month.

 

Trello

 

Trello allows you to manage feedback in the form of cards. Trello is very customizable and can be used for any kind of project tracking and management, including app dev.

Trello is great for small teams or if you’re look for something that’s free, quick and simple. However, it lacks advanced management features like reporting.

  • Integrations: Instabug, Slack, JIRA, Google Drive, Dropbox, Zendesk, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $9.99 per user per month.

 

Asana

 

Asana helps you take bug reports and user feedback from report to resolution. It allows you to turn conversations into actionable tasks, so you can take the next step right away as well as see the progress for any project at any point in time.

Unlike JIRA, Asana wasn’t created specifically for software management and is more generic. It’s great to have workspaces, keep your teams organized, and effectively manage feedback.

  • Integrations: Instabug, Dropbox, Slack, Chrome, Github, Google Drive, and more.
  • Pricing: Free. Paid plans start at $9.99 per user per month.

 

Pivotal Tracker

 

A story-based project management tool that lets you select among features, bugs, and tasks.

You can create different workspaces to arrange your projects side-by-side for an accessible view of your entire work life. You can also easily move stories between projects using drag and drop, search across backlogs and view automatically generated insights and reports about your projects.

Pivotal Tracker is targeted towards developers and software engineers working with an agile framework.

  • Integrations: JIRA, Zendesk, Github, Slack, Twitter, and more.
  • Pricing: Free for up to 3 users. Paid plans start at $12.5 per month.