The Coffee Wars
Last December Starbucks launched a Mobile Order & Pay mobile application in Portland, Oregon. This new app lets customers place an order on their smartphone, pay, and decide which Starbucks store they will use based on the distance from their current location or the time it will take to prepare the order. There are no more lines or waiting time. When the phone says your order is ready you just walk in and pick it up.
The test group has proven a success and Starbucks will roll out this mobile service nationwide later this year. According to Goldman Sachs analyst Karen Holthouse, mobile orders could add at least 1% to the company’s revenues.
Not to be outdone, Dunkin Doughnuts just announced that it is working on a mobile application which lets you buy your iced coffee from your mobile phone and pick it up at the store. This is in reaction to its competitor taking the initiative.
“We’re clearly not going to be first,” Dunkin’s Chief Information and Strategy Officer Jack Clare told the Wall Street Journal.
Mr. Clare understands what Starbucks already knew. For small order companies like Dunkin and Starbucks, mobility is the next arena. A mobile application gives a customer the opportunity to make multiple orders a day. They can order their morning coffee on the subway, and their second cup at the office. Since the uncertainties of lines and order prep time have been eliminated, it is far easier to pop over to the local store, pick up your coffee, and get back to work faster than what would be considered a bathroom break.
This will be a big boon for whomever conquers the mobility market.
The Battle for Enterprise Mobility
The coffee wars serve as the perfect case study for the two must-haves in enterprise mobility.
The first is that you must have a mobile application on the market. If you don’t, you run the risk of watching your competitor take away your market share. If the 1% revenue gain projected for Starbucks it at the expense of Dunkin Doughnuts portion of the market, that translates into a 4% revenue drop for Dunkin.
Dunkin doughnuts is also teaching us the inevitable outcome if mobility: saturation. The initial phase of mobility will be the first entrants, and they will enjoy uncontested supremacy but for a short time. Eventually their competitors will follow suit to stay competitive and every company will have its own mobile application.
The CIO of Dunkin Doughnuts said it best — if their competitor wasn’t doing it, they probably wouldn’t be doing it either.
This evolution of mobility brings us to the second vital: Make sure the mobile application works.
If the major players of any industry are providing products and services that are at least 75% the same, like coffee and egg sandwiches, it’s a lot harder for each business to stand out. In mobility there is one sure fire way:
As more of an enterprise’s business is being done over their mobile application, the reliability of that mobile application will determine the level of trust the company itself will have in its users. Saying “Dunkin Doughnuts’ mobile application works better than Starbucks,” may mean more than saying “Starbucks makes better egg sandwiches.”
The Deciding Factor
“The hard part, I think, is really bulletproofing ourselves from things going wrong,” said Dunkin’s Chief Strategy Officer to the Wall Street Journal.
All it takes is a series of bugs, poor performance, or a crash on an exotic local network and a mobile application will be panned on blogs, forums, and social media. What’s worse, even if the next version get it right, many users won’t bother.
Mobile quality will play kingmaker in mobility in the years ahead. It will determine the good, the bad, and the ugly for every industry. A company will have to do everything in its power to make sure every function of its mobile application is working, working fast, and working on every kind of device over every local network.
If a competitor’s app has a bug, the other company will take its business. A company can protect its market share by simply eliminating the chance something will go wrong by deploying the greatest weapon in the battle for mobility.
Breaking Out the Heavy Artillery: Comprehensive Mobile Application Testing
There is intense pressure to deploy the applications quickly, and testing takes time. There is a lack of understanding of the different areas of a mobile application that needs to be tested. As a result, at least 50% of the mobile applications on the market are not tested sufficiently. That is why, according to SAP, 78% of enterprise mobile applications are abandoned after just one use.
How would you like to be part of the 22%? Now that’s differentiation!
It’s not that mobile applications aren’t tested, they are. It’s that they aren’t tested properly. Mobility brings in a new set of variables. As the industry evolves to multimedia, wearables, even devices having to talk to each other without an interface you need to test for the new unknowns.
Software testing assumes a desktop. Mobility requires testing for different operating systems, varying screen sizes, and users who take their mobile application with them to different local networks.
As mobile application market saturates every industry leaving no competitor with a clear cut advantage, Comprehensive Mobile Application Testing will be the next big decider of who profits and who doesn’t.
The best mobile testing tools are the ones that take all of this into account. From function, performance, time constraints of app development, automation, performance over different local networks, and more, you need something that covers everything.
At Experitest we make sure your comprehensive mobile application testing needs are covered. Our SeeTest solutions suite includes test automation, functionality, network virtualization, performance, monitoring, as well as using the cloud to optimize the efficiency and productivity of your mobile testing.
What is Mobile Application Testing?
Mobile application testing is the practice of making sure every function of a mobile application works on any mobile device, over any mobile operating system, and that the mobile application performs smoothly on any local network.