Google Brings Fast Automated Testing for Android User Interfaces

25 October 2013
Ben Logan

Author: Ben Logan

Passionate about improving services and experiences for the people that use them.

An automated Android testing framework, known as Espresso, has just been launched by Google – it allows for the automated testing of x86 machines in the cloud within a multi-threaded environment, which effectively addresses the concurrency issues usually associated with user interface testing.

Due to the large number of available devices, testing Android products can be an expensive and time consuming process. The usual solution to this is to make use of an emulator to support a multitude of OS versions, screen sizes and memory constraints, which whilst being a useful method can sometimes be a slow process.

Google’s new framework differs from the use of standard emulators as it allows for testing in a multi-threaded environment and removes a lot of the associated code with writing tests. It works across a wide selection of devices, including smartphones, tablets, TV’s, cars and so on.

Though still in the Developer Preview stage and only available on Google Code, Espresso will be moved onto the Android SDK framework once fully mature and stable as a release. Nevertheless, it is currently being used by Google on a selection of their own applications, including Maps and Drive.

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