App Quality Alliance (AQuA), the mobile industry’s non-profit organization supporting quality app development, has released a new version of its Best Practice Guidelines with extended support for developers in the areas of network optimization and battery usage.   The guidelines are for developers across all platforms and combine a range of common sense and less obvious steps that developers can follow to ensure quality is at the heart of the development process.

In updating its guidelines, which were first published in March 2011, AQuA has worked closely with both the GSMA and AQuA member AT&T to ensure an aligned approach and a document that is straightforward and valuable for developers.

Specifically, the new document includes expanded information about network efficiency, both in terms of radio usage optimisation and caching and avoiding the re-transmission of images that have already been transmitted to the device.

In addition, a new version of the AQuA Testing Criteria for Android apps has been released with tests added specifically relating to mobile games.  The Testing Criteria is also now available as an interactive online tool, which developers can use to go through the relevant tests and download a report once the app has passed.  The Testing Criteria is the set of tests apps have to pass to be included within the AQuA Quality App Directory.
“Prior to testing the AQuA criteria on our apps, we invested most of our time ensuring client requirements were met”, said Daniel Box, QA Manager, Mubaloo. “This means less time is spent on checking more specific user interactions with devices and how they affect the app’s performance. Since the introduction of the AQuA test criteria, our team has spent more time investigating ‘real world’ scenarios that may not have been part of our initial testing scope.”

AQuA is the mobile industry’s non-profit organization supporting developers to further-improve the development of quality apps. It is run and funded by its members: AT&T, LG, Motorola, Nokia, Oracle, Orange, Samsung and Sony Mobile.

AQuA’s Best Practice document and the Testing Criteria for Android Apps provide guidance and tests on a range of areas including user interface, performance, functionality, security, privacy, media, data handling and stability. AQuA provides both to developers, free of charge, to supportquality in the development process and to help them reduce time spent on testing. AQuA publishes the mobile industry’s only directory of quality apps, the Quality App Directory, helping developers gain recognition by standing out from the crowd with their quality apps.