The future has arrived sooner than expected!
Covid-19 has accelerated digital adoption. Enterprises now see value in emerging tech investments such as Extended Reality (XR), Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the likes. For instance, new use cases in XR are helping enterprise architecture leaders deliver greater business value with seamless experiences. IDC says enterprises are moving to augmented and virtual reality majorly driven by leading use cases with US$ 31.2 Bn spend by 2023.
XR has the potential to reorient the enterprise environment, right from design to development, and production to maintenance, however, it will never realise its full potential unless fundamental and functional issues are addressed. Enterprises face multiple challenges with the XR development lifecycle - one of them is the automation of testing XR applications as it involves establishing a controlled environment, multiple form factors, identifying test scenarios, and angles of perception. Additionally, XR applications vary in terms of their types (AR/VR/MR), as well as the platforms they run on (HMDs/Mobile/Tablets), requiring different OS and SDKs.
With the increasing complexity in tech stacks and shrinking release cycles, conventional manual testing tools and frameworks are failing to support XR modality. So what's the way forward?
Arium: Thoughtworks XR Test Automation Framework
Arium is an open-source, lightweight, extensible, platform-agnostic framework that helps write automation tests that are built specifically for XR Applications. The automation testing framework for 3D applications helps Developers/QAs run functional tests on 3D apps built using Unity.
The current automation frameworks available in the market are not built specifically for XR applications. While there are frameworks for game simulation, they do not take into consideration any SDK or XR related specification. Thoughtworks has addressed this gap with Arium. In some cases, where an SDK's interactions cannot be bypassed, Arium accommodates a customized plugin, which can interact via SDKs, in addition to interacting directly with the Unity event system. Check out and contribute to the Arium project.
Arium helps enterprises improve developer/ QA efficiency in:
- Functional Testing
- Usability Testing
- Experiential and Immersive Testing
- Performance Testing
- Compatibility Testing
Notably, Arium isn't our first attempt at building testing automation software. The most popular open-source test automation tool today, Selenium, was invented by Thoughtworks. We have contributed to several popular open-source tools that automate testing of front-ends, microservices, and even end-to-end IoT environments. Some of our products include GoCD (open-source CD server), and Gauge (open-source test automation). We have capitalized on this rich experience to build Arium.
The increased rate of change in the technology landscape will continue to create a gap in the tech available to new disruptors and the enterprise’s ability to absorb tech evolution. Thoughtworks helps enterprises adopt emerging technology more readily. The evolution of our XR practices is testimony to our penchant for staying ahead of the curve.