India is the third largest smartphone market in the world, and is expected to cross the 300 million mobile internet users mark by 2017. Mobile device makers and service providers are together offering very lucrative deals to further crack into this bubbling market. What does all of this mean for the software testing industry? The software talent pool in India is a no-brainer. Right from developers to testers, from designers to architects, from support engineers to maintenance teams, there has never been a dearth for resources. This mobile app wave is particularly exciting for software testers, as the relevance of taking up the software testing effort right here in India, has further increased. Testers have access to devices that end users would be use, networks they would operate on, and more importantly the context in which they function. That contextual knowledge in testing mobile applications in the Indian market is unparalleled. The market here is so diverse that the user base ranges from the most tech savvy users in corporate jobs, the CxOs all the way to small scale business owners, to sometimes even the un-educated. For instance, Flipkart is an application that they all may be using on a regular basis – however, the scenarios, the workflows, the search patterns, content of interest may all be very different for varied categories of the user base. Test attributes such as performance, security, usability, accessibility will all need to account for this context sensitivity to cover all bases in delivering a quality app that is regionally a hit, in the country.
For example, the number of disabled in India is a sizeable 22 million. One of our visually challenged engineers, Amit, at QA InfoTech was recently talking about his experiences with Android and how regularly he shops on Flipkart amongst other apps – he is a savvy mobile user. This is just one such instance of the many such Amits’ all across the country. And if we believe we already have reached unprecedented heights with the mobile penetration, we are far from reality. Punit Soni, the Chief Product Officer at Flipkart says, Indian market is still far from smartphone saturation.
With more growth expected across the types of mobile apps that will enter the market, the more user friendly and budget friendly devices and networks, the ever-growing diverse persona, the mobile testing market in India definitely has a very exciting future ahead.