Is Localization Testing a Standalone Test Effort

Last month I had blogged on TechWell about the importance of testing in conjunction. In today’s collaborative testing world, conjunction powered testing is certainly becoming inevitable to develop a product of reliable quality. Herein certain areas of testing demand and warrant more collaborative quality efforts than others. Localization is one such effort, which has a lot of dependency as well as need for conjunction with other areas. At the same time, there are parts of localization testing that can be done completely stand-alone that it can even be done by remote testers for a product team that is otherwise very tightly integrated.

The areas that localization testing is highly dependent on includes functional, usability and accessibility. With functional it is a no brainer to the extent that localization functional is in itself a huge chunk of a localization test effort. However, not many think of the connect between localization and usability/accessibility.
Given the cultural nuances associated with a localization effort, a usability / user experience testing specific to the locale under test is very valuable. We for example at QA InfoTech provide a cultural nuances check as part of our linguistic testing in the localization testing services we offer.  There have been serious market repercussions even amongst known name brands where cultural nuances and user experience checks on localized products were ignored.
Similarly with the growing popularity for accessibility, teams are beginning to rightly realize there is a lot to be tested for, with the co-existence of these two attributes – localization and accessibility. A couple of our engineers reached out to us earlier this year with a conference topic on the need for accessibility testing in a localization test effort. As their topic unfolded we realized the scale and importance of these two areas and how add-ons such as favlets are enabling accessibility checks in localized solutions today. For example imagine a product that has been localized whereas the piece on accessibility in localization has completely been missed. No localized alt-texts for images, no localized transcripts in audio visual clips, screen reader checks for localized content have not been verified – accessibility for localized flavours of the application may still not be a mandated requirement today, but certainly the application would be missing a huge user base, in this scenario. Similarly some localized content may be so complex, that basic performance tests may also have to be done to re-verify rendering in localized solutions. While it may appear that localization can happen in silo post the engineering effort for the English app, it is far from reality. We at QA InfoTech, as localization test service providers and preferred localization vendors for leading Fortune companies, have been implementing localization testing as a tightly coupled service tying it seamlessly with the overall quality effort. We will be happy to discuss this with you in greater detail, including case studies on how we have done it for several organizations.

About the Author

QA InfoTech

QA InfoTech

Established in 2003, with less than five testing experts, QA InfoTech has grown leaps and bounds with three QA Centers of Excellence globally; two of which are located in the hub of IT activity in India, Noida, and the other, our affiliate QA InfoTech Inc Michigan USA. In 2010 and 2011, QA InfoTech has been ranked in the top 100 places to work for in India.

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