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Earlier last week, Facebook unveiled its mobile device testing lab equipped with physical Android and iOS devices for testing Facebook app, Messenger and Instagram. While it shouldn’t be surprising that Facebook ended up with an in-house testing solution to test their mobile apps, the amazing thing here is the determination of bringing higher quality and top-notch performance to its apps by building a large-scale testing environment with almost 2000 devices using 60 racks to test against.

Mobile Device Testing Lab

To ensure the scalability, stability and concurrency of a device lab with such a large amount of devices, Facebook obviously has done a great job there for mobile app testing. Let’s first review some of the details about what they’ve done for the setup.

  • All real, physical devices with no emulators
  • Not only mainstream device models, but once-red-hot ones are also included
  • All the latest versions of Android (KitKat and above) and iOS (7 to 10)
  • Phones are rebooted after every test
  • The new version of their app will be automatically tested on in-house devices
  • Using PCs to connect Android devices and Mac Mini’s for iOS devices

Why In-House Mobile Device Lab?

Like many of the other companies out there, Facebook could have relied on a cloud-based public testing solution like Bitbar Public Cloud to guarantee their apps stay on top. However, the decision behind using a dedicated mobile device lab is made normally for a couple of reasons. And we believe Facebook wants to

  • Fix bugs with as little turnaround time as possible
  • Shorten the dev-and-test cycle to a large degree
  • Accelerate app releases with more new features delivered to end-users
  • Cover the widest range of mobile device users
  • Get the team the agile philosophy and mobile DevOps methodology

Does Facebook’s Mobile Device Lab Inspire You?

Now, does their decision of the setup inspire you? Or have you been considering in-house solutions for testing your applications or games of Android or iOS or both versions? From the perspective of HW and SW, it shouldn’t be very difficult for you to get all the needed devices and machine servers. And all you need is a robust and reliable solution to get your automated tests working on all of your device variants.

Bitbar On-Premise is the go-to solution that can fulfill your in-house testing needs immediately. From the beginning of Bitbar Testing, we have been providing On-Premise solution to organizations including Government, Financial Services, Mobile OEMs, Telecommunications, Gaming companies, etc. The size of setup varies largely depending on the needs, from tens to hundreds of devices regardless of Android or iOS phones, bringing the high scalability and concurrency to our customers by running automated tests on all of the devices in parallel mode.

Though Bitbar Public Cloud is a public environment where all devices are shared with every free user and paying customer, the environment itself is deemed as an enterprise-grade setup and configuration hosted by Bitbar. Over 1000 devices in total (430+ unique devices) are hosted and connected to the server 24/7 to ensure our users have access to these devices at any time from anywhere. Bitbar Public Cloud on our premise itself is a great example to prove you the reliability and scalability of our On-Premise solution. With Bitbar On-Premise deployed in your centralized premise, your distributed teams can run mobile automated tests on real devices no matter what timezone they are located around the world.

To get a closer look at how to build, operate and maintain a large scale mobile device test lab, don’t miss this great ebook that illustrates all the info from basics to specific HW we use at Bitbar Public Cloud to daily maintenance tips. The ebook will surely help you better understand the process of setting up one and do better mobile app testing.

‘But Investing in a Spacious Data Center Is Not My Top Choice?’

It is very normal that due to multiple reasons, building and maintaining a data center with physical devices is not the ideal option for your company and the nature of the application or project that you’re working on determines that a private environment is needed to meet the requirements.

In that case, Bitbar PrivateCloud is the de facto solution that you should think about. Like Bitbar On-Premise solution, we have been hosting different-sized dedicated environments for customers from various industries, with the setup size ranging from dozens to hundreds of devices. After all, Bitbar PrivateCloud comes with the same technology and capabilities in terms of customization as in Bitbar On-Premise. It’s solely the matter of who hosts and manages the environment.

Happy Testing!

Lingkai Shao

Marketing Manager