QA Best Practices for Smart TV Automation Testing

7 min read

Innovative TV applications are the future frontier of competition for media corporations and content providers. There are many opportunities in this relatively unexplored area, but there are also many difficulties in development and quality control.

Developers with more experience may be tempted to test smart TV apps the same way they would test apps for smartphones with larger screens. Unfortunately, you're going about things all wrong. An alternative viewpoint is required due to the considerable disparities between mobile and innovative TV applications.

What is smart TV testing?

Compared to testing apps on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, app testing on Smart TV is an entirely new big thing. This way, the testing approach for testing and QA of innovative TV applications should be drastically altered.

Customer perspective is a crucial consideration while developing intelligent TV applications. Therefore, testing interfaces with persons is vital. Even though smart TV automation testing and emulators have become the norm due to the time they save when testing various use cases, manual testing should be augmented to address issues that automated testing cannot. When evaluating the visual delivery, picture size, and layout of components on the screen, the size and the distance between the customer and the screen are crucial considerations. When testing a plan or format, emulators are less effective. Therefore, it is always preferable to employ real TV. It is essential to try the user interface in multiple environments.

The vast number of clever TV retailers, the variety of shapes and models, the number of testing phases, and the availability of Operating Systems all contribute to the complexity of smart tv app testing. Application developers must test their software on the exact Smart TV model, platform, and operating system/program it supports.

Different types of testing

  • Regression testing is crucial for finding mistakes or faults in functional or non-functional areas that could appear after modifying the code.
  • Functional testing is a sort of black-box testing and a QA procedure. It examines the requirements for software components and generally focuses on whether the result meets the requirements.
  • Smoke testing: Although this type of testing is not particularly thorough, it is still desirable to run all QA builds through it to find any fundamental flaws.
  • Browser compatibility testing: The app is carefully examined in several browser versions
  • API performance testing: JMeter can be used for API integration and performance testing.
  • Usability evaluation The user experience might succeed or fail based on usability. The application's navigation and flow are examined through usability testing, and UX is improved.
  • Crowd testing: Several people test the application to gather further feedback on any bugs

Testing checklist for smart TVs

Different types of OS


Apple's tvOS is a particular OS explicitly built for the Apple TV set-top box. tvOS has its software development kit (SDK), and apps for tvOS are developed using Swift and JavaScript programming languages. The current version of the Xcode IDE, which includes the tvOS SDK along with iOS and Swift, must be installed before you can begin developing tvOS apps.


Tizen is a Linux-based OS that runs Samsung smart TV apps. Tizen, like tvOS, has its software development kit, and most Tizen apps are developed in C++ and HTML 5. (though it also supports C at a system level). Developers working with the Tizen operating system can access app creation tools built using the jQuery and jQuery Mobile libraries.


Software for LG's Smart TV platform is developed on this OS. It is a Linux-based OS that leverages the Mojo Javascript Framework and supports C++, C, and HTML 5 (similar to Tizen).

Streaming on an Android TV

Android TV, as its name suggests, is an operating system for Android digital media players, and it is supported by Sony, Sharp, and Xiaomi intelligent TVs. To build a native app, you'll need to know Java and Kotlin, while creating a web app requires knowledge of JavaScript, just like any other Android app. Leanback, Leanback Preferences, Leanback Paging, and Leanback Tabs are just a few of the libraries you can use to make an Android TV app.

Fire OS

Finally, there's Fire OS, an Android-based variant. The Fire OS is used to develop programs for the Amazon Fire TV, and you'll need to be familiar with Java, Kotlin, or JavaScript. Fire Tablet SDK is an operating system-specific set of developer tools that allows for extensive customization of the Fire Tablet.

Best practices for QA while smart TV testing

  • To further complicate matters, testing in various video formats is recommended and ensuring that specific video formats are supported across multiple devices. Test the content on various devices, from different models to those of other years, with varying encryption methods, playing features, subtitle support, and network speeds.
  • Check for network issues. Unlike mobile apps, most smart TV apps are meant to communicate with the internet. Poor network connectivity is a common scenario overlooked by testers, leading to the program crashing or closing unexpectedly. The correct error messages must be presented in the event of low network connectivity. Thus testers must exercise these use scenarios.
  • Since smart TVs do not support pixel CSS, you need to ensure that your app will run smoothly across various screen sizes and resolutions before releasing it to the public.
  • Check the app's usability. It should have intuitive controls on a smart TV.
  • The visuals should be crisp (the alignment and spacing should be thought out), adapt to the size of the viewing area, and have the best possible resolution.
  • The loading indicator should show when data is being loaded or when buffering is occurring.
  • Finding things with a search engine should be easier and more rewarding.


Regularly conduct performance updates for your app. However, this cannot be achieved through manual testing. Instead, make the change to smart tv test automation. Using HeadSpin's solutions, testing media content on various Smart TVs, connected devices, and Smart TV apps is quick, easy, and thorough. Perform experiments with Smart TV apps, digital rights management (DRM) content, voice activation, and speaker-based use cases, and keep an eye on the data.

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zain maan 2
I'm a profissnal guest blogger and I love it! I've been working in this field for more than 3 years, and have learned so much. My goal is to get the word out ab...
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