Top Test Automation Tools to Choose

Top Test Automation Tools to Choose
March 27 06:31 2018 Print This Article

Note: the article was updated in Noveber 2018.

Development of own framework for test automation can be rather a challenging task. But, fortunately, there is a number of tools and framework that provide a wide functionality and are able to satisfy different testing objectives. Among the variety of available tools for test automation, the most popular and widely used ones are Selenium WebDriver, Appium, TestComplete, and Ranorex Studio.

Selenium WebDriver

Selenium WebDriver, also known as WebDriver, is a software library for browser management. It is a family of drivers for different browsers, including a set of client libraries in various languages, that enable the work with these browsers.

Advantages of Selenium WebDriver

  • Wide support from different software developers including Google, Microsoft
  • System operation on a regular basis, patches for new browser versions
  • Independence from platform, browser and its version
  • Enabled automation in different programming languages
  • Integration with other frameworks
  • Support of parallel testing
  • Scripts execution on remote machines and services
  • Tests launching on schedule on CI systems
  • Opportunity to automate hybrid applications developed on the basis of OpenFin or Electron

But using Selenium WebDriver for test automation projects, you can face several disadvantages that limit the tool functionality and complicate the testing activities.

Disadvantages of WebDriver

  • Automation of such container technologies as flash is impossible
  • Test automation engineer should possess programming skills as the scripts for automated tests should be written manually
  • It’s impossible to execute validation and reporting in one library. They should be set separately. And this requires additional means
  • Llibrary may contain bugs that are difficult or sometimes impossible to remove. This is a free open-source project that does not have a separate team responsible for bug fixing in the current library versions.


Appium Framework is an open source test automation framework written in JavaScript and designed for test automation of mobile applications of various types. As the sphere of mobile test automation is at the very start of its progress and development, the framework does not provide wide functionality and capacities.


  • Simultaneous development of automated scripts for iOS and Android. No need to support several automation projects in parallel
  • An active development of the framework together with its functionality
  • Support of several programming languages
  • Wide community support
  • Independency from the used platform
  • Wide range of device configuration automation without any additional settings

Apart from that, the test automation engineers define several limitations in the framework functionality. Development of autotests and additional libraries connection should be done manually for adding tests to scripts and generating reports. When automating some applications, the interaction between the framework and UI may cause some problems. Appium has a slow operation speed in comparison to other tools that support mobile automation. Mobile game automation is impossible as the framework does not support the interaction with Unity3d and similar technologies.


TestComplete is a platform developed by SmartBear for automated functional and UI testing. It supports UI tests automation for different desktop and package applications, web and mobile solutions. TestComplete has three modules – each designed for testing particular application types.

Advantages of TestComplete

  • Ensures the verification of applications on physical and virtual machines
  • Simplifies the procedure of exploring UI elements markup
  • Gives the information about a certain UI element after its clicking
  • Provides a rich support of logging procedure including the features of customizing logs, attaching screenshots, assigning priorities and defining logging events interceptors.

But some features behavior is not documented. For example, tester cannot hover the UI element by mouse, and in some cases it is impossible to convert the returned objects to array. TestComplete provides a limited test flow handling, e.g., no opportunity to set handlers for start / finish events of the test suite. Also, the functionality of IDE script editor is limited. It does not provide such features as a smart renaming of code entities, quick navigation, objects’ properties name autocompleting.

Ranorex Studio

Being designed for automation of GUI testing, Ranorex Studio ensures a smooth workflow and effective checking. It has “script recording” function if it is unnecessary to write the code manually. Using program interface, it is possible to set test data receiving from external file / spreadsheet or database. Ranorex has an in-build functionality for report generation and script execution. The framework does not require high programming skills for autotests development.

Disadvantages of Ranorex Studio

Using Ranorex Studio for automated GUI testing, you can face the following disadvantages:

  • In some cases, automated script recording may work improperly and require manual code adjustment
  • The framework supports the programs only on Windows platform
  • Ranorex Studio is a commercial test automation framework
  • In comparison to free alternatives, framework is not supported with enough documentation on usage issues and ways of their solving
  • It is rather difficult to connect additional functionality to automation project as tool is oriented only on the provided functional, e.g., script run and reports receiving
  • In the majority of cases, it is impossible to automate customized elements of application interface as the tool does not recognize them.

In case of mobile test automation, we may download the research Future of Mobile Automation by QATestLab, an indepednent QA provider from Ukraine. The research will guide you through key concepts, challenges and possible approaches of mobile test automation based on the expertise of 6 leading market players. QATestLab Partners reveal the solutions to address the challenges of mobile development.

Also, the company has published the Paper with the analysis of test automation tools used by QATestLab employees. The review of tools based on practical use you can read here.

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Helen Johnson
Helen Johnson

has 3-year experince in content managing, skills of copyediting and proofreading of web content and documentation

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