In today’s world, “manual” may sound like an outdated word. But manual testing still has an important role to play, even for many software organisations that successfully automate most of their tasks.

Nowhere is the importance of manual testing more evident than in the context of developing applications on mobile devices. While automated tests can streamline the majority of testing required to release software, manual testing is used by QA teams to fill in the gaps and ensure that the final product really works as intended through the eyes of actual human end users.

Many usability questions are often answered through manual testing:

Are all elements of the design arranged in a comfortable way and visually, in the correct place?

Is it easy to navigate with standard gestures?

Does the app look and feel consistent on a wide range of devices?

We believe that manual testing is maybe even more important than before, due to the growing expectations of end users. Automation can be very effective and cost friendly in the implementation of some of the objective scenarios – however, from a subjective point of view, there isn’t an alternative to manual testing. It is wise to automate that which can be quantified but in my experience quality cannot always be judged by facts and figures. For the qualitative factors companies still and will always need the human interface.

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