How to Test Mobile Apps on a Computer (Desktops) In 2023

A Guide To Testing Mobile Apps On A Desktop In 2022

Testing mobile apps on actual hardware is simple. However, it necessitates a substantial infrastructure that is challenging to maintain in the early stages of the SDLC(Software Development Life Cycle ). In the early stages of the SDLC, regression testing of the app is essential. But can it be done without a sophisticated infrastructure? Yes, it is! Computers can be used to test mobile apps using emulators and simulators.

As mobile applications penetrate more and more areas of our life, it is more crucial than ever for businesses to test their mobile apps thoroughly before making them available to the general public. This article will discuss mobile app testing on desktops, the many kinds of it, and the tools that might assist you in carrying it out.

1. Emulators

  • They are virtual devices that offer excellent native-control-like functionality, including control over brightness, location, and battery level. In order to translate ISA (Instruction Set Architecture) instructions into binary language, which is subsequently used as input by the desktop, the emulator imitates the processor architecture. The main disadvantage is that emulators are a little slower than actual devices. The overhead involved in converting to binary instructions is the reason behind this.
  • When the ISA of the device you are simulating matches that of the desktop, the performance of an emulator can be improved. However, it is really challenging to implement that. The cause is that desktop computers typically employ Intel architecture whereas mobile devices rely on ARM architecture.

2. Emulator for Genymotion

Android emulators are frequently used to test mobile applications on desktop computers since they are simple to use. When compared to the Android emulator that is included with Android Studio, it performs quickly. Let’s examine how to use any motion emulator.

  • Get the Genymotion Emulator now. Once you register on their web development framework, you may begin downloading. The genymotion emulator is available for free download for all operating systems. 
  • After downloading, install the genymotion emulator on your desktop by following the pop-up instructions. Launch the Genymotion emulator once the installation has been completed. 
  • You will be asked to sign up for a genymotion account or enter your login information. Please enter your information. You will also be questioned about why you plan to use a Genymotion emulator. 
  • You may select your own preference by clicking the next button. You are now all set to build your virtual gadget. 
  • To add your virtual device, click Add. Depending on the amount of RAM on your system, you can set up as many virtual devices as you like on your desktop. Additionally, you may select the setup you want to replicate. Select a custom Android API 19 experiment for the initial use case. During the virtual device creation procedure, you may specify the CPU and memory size. 
  • Once you click “install” on the next screen, it will take some time for your emulator to set up. Your emulator will appear under installed devices on the genymotion emulator homepage after the device has been installed. 
  • The device may be booted, and the emulator will launch immediately. Now that your mobile application is installed, you may test it by dragging it from your computer to the emulator or by downloading it from the Play Store. 
  • Genymotion is free and one of the quickest emulators for testing mobile apps tools. These days, the industry uses it a lot.

3. Emulator for Android

  • Installing Android Studio is a must for using the Android emulator. For a free download of Android Studio.
  • Go to their website to download android studio for free. 
  • Launch it when it has been installed on your computer. Android Studio is deprecated for 32-bit computers and operates on 64-bit CPUs. 
  • For Android Studio to function, SDK tools 26.1.1 or above must be installed. 
  • To install the APIs needed for your virtual device, click the SDK management button in the upper right column. 
  • Mobile testing emulator tools include SDK Manager and AVD Manager. 
  • The moment has come to construct your device after you have installed the necessary set of APIs.
  • The AVD management icon in the upper right corner must be opened in order to create the emulator. To construct your device, click Create a Virtual Device. You may pick the setup and mobile device that you wish to simulate. 
  • When your device has been successfully created, you may launch it from AVD Manager by clicking on its green icon. Your device will unlock as soon as you press it.
  • Running this takes hardly any time at all. Installing a mobile app is as simple as dragging and dropping it, or you may utilize the play store on your device.
  • It is a very user-friendly virtual mobile device emulator that is included with Android Studio and can be used in all types of mobile app testing situations.

4. Simulators

Currently, you are aware of Android emulators, but what if you needed to test your device on an iOS smartphone instead? There’s no need to look online for a smartphone simulator. It’s time to install Xcode so that we can use the XCode simulator to run an iOS application. 

  • Install XCode on your Mac computer. You can create and test mobile applications using the IDE provided by XCode.
  • You must have an iOS simulator environment after downloading the simulator. To get the iOS version for testing, open XCode, go to Preferences, and click Download. 
  • Once your iOS version has been installed, go to Developer Tools -> Simulator. 
  • You will then have the opportunity to build and run your simulator. 
  • You may now use the XCode simulator to test your iOS application. 
  • There are various online mobile simulators available for testing, but the XCode simulator is the most popular and, without a doubt, the most effective one.

The use of emulators and simulators has benefits

  • It is relatively simple to download emulators and simulators, making testing on them very straightforward. Without any trouble, you can begin testing your mobile application.
  • Since it is free, the cost of infrastructure will be reduced.
  • Setting up a large infrastructure of tests to test your application across all platforms and versions is really challenging. Simulators and emulators aid in testing on a large testbed to minimize the possibility of problems.
  • Taking screenshots while tests are running is fairly simple when using emulators and simulators.


Starting to use emulators and simulators is always a smart idea. But due to drawbacks like mobile device battery life, camera resolution, interruptions, and memory utilization, actual devices will always be superior and emulators/simulators won’t be able to compete with them. Testing on both actual hardware and simulators and emulators is advised as a hybrid approach.

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