Telerik's free Test Studio for iOS offers an exciting new tool for developers. It allows you to record and execute automated tests in your mobile apps and websites. Users can also use the tool to provide feedback to your team as they test.
Telerik worked closely with Apple to get this app into the iOS App Store, and it provides an astonishing utility to anyone who develops. It allows you to run tests in separate apps that you create. It also works with stand-alone websites.
To make your app Test Studio-compatible, you do need to compile in a small static library so Test Studio can see it on your device or in the simulator. Website testing works straight out of the box. The test suite is aware of all installed applications that have been prepared for use with these tools.
In the testing mode, you create a series of validation sequences. These sequences consist of interaction events, which you can record directly from your app, and verification tests, which you specify in the built-in action editor. These tests ensure that user interactions match certain expectations that you set.
A special-purpose menu, which appears directly in-app, lets you pause, add tasks, and review the steps that you have already taken. Anyone who's used a UI recording tool will be familiar with this kind of interface. Nicely, the menu can be easily flipped out of your way if it obscures things you need to work with. A lot of work has gone into making this suite usable for developers.
This app works in the simulator as well as on devices; it also works in off-line mode, so you can create your tests while on-the-go if you're away from the Internet.
Once recorded, you can then play back these interactions directly to the app or website. The integrated library will simulate all user interactions in the test, and confirm that the interface matches all your verification targets.
Since these sequences are stored outside of the app/website environment, you can test your evolving product as you work on new features and bug updates for each build. The test suite resumes control when tests fail, so you can inspect where and why the interaction sequences failed.
A secondary mode allows you to deploy your app through ad-hoc testing to solicit user feedback. It offers in-app bookmarking, screen shots, and e-mail, so users can respond to you as they work with hands-on deployment during your testing phase.
The app is available for free, with the developers monetizing through future cloud services. "The big thing for us," said spokesman Chris Eyhorn, "is offering a tool that scales for us from one-man development shops all the way up to the enterprise." He says they plan to offer free versions indefinitely, to be an active part of the Apple developer ecosystem.
Update: TUAW reader Maurice Sharp pointed to this update from Telerik. Apparently, the studio does not run in the simulator since the App Store version went live. Telerik is looking into it.