Introduction to Cross-Browser Testing on Cloud: Benefits and Challenges

In today’s digital era, as businesses increasingly transition online and technology rapidly advances, it is crucial for organizations to have a mechanism that enables developers to create top-notch web applications with seamless multi-browser compatibility. This is where the focus on cross-browser testing becomes essential, shifting web development from being an option to a necessity. Overcoming the challenges associated with cross browser testing is vital for organizations to experience a transformative impact.

With the increasing reliance on online platforms and the rapid pace of technological advancements, organizations must prioritize cross-browser testing as a fundamental aspect of their web development process. By addressing the challenges associated with cross-browser testing and adopting a robust methodology, businesses can successfully navigate the ever-evolving digital landscape and ensure the seamless performance of their web applications.

What is cross-browser testing?

Cross-browser testing is a crucial aspect of non-functional testing that allows you to verify the functionality and compatibility of your website across various browser-OS combinations, different devices, and with assistive tools. It ensures that your website performs as intended when accessed through different popular browsers such as Firefox, Chrome, Edge, and Safari on different operating systems like Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

With cross-browser testing, you can also evaluate how your website appears and functions on a range of devices, including smartphones, tablets, desktops, and laptops. This helps ensure a consistent user experience across different screen sizes and resolutions.

Furthermore, cross-browser testing ensures that your website is compatible with assistive technologies such as screen readers. This is important for individuals with disabilities, as it allows them to access and interact with your website effectively.

By conducting cross-browser testing, you can identify and address any issues related to browser compatibility, device responsiveness, and accessibility, thereby ensuring that your website delivers a seamless experience to all users, regardless of the platform or assistive technologies they are using.

Why is cross-browser testing performed?

Testing, including cross-browser testing, is performed for several reasons:

Identifying and Fixing Issues: Testing helps identify any defects, bugs, or issues in the website or application. By uncovering these problems, developers can take corrective action and fix them, ensuring that the software works as intended.

Improving Efficiency and User Experience: Testing allows for the identification and elimination of bottlenecks, performance issues, and usability problems. By addressing these issues, developers can enhance the overall efficiency and user experience of the website or application, leading to increased customer satisfaction and improved business outcomes.

Mitigating Risks: Testing helps organizations uncover potential pitfalls, vulnerabilities, and security risks in their software. By identifying these risks early on, developers can implement appropriate measures to mitigate them, reducing the chances of security breaches, data loss, or system failures.

Regarding cross-browser testing specifically, it serves two primary purposes:

Ensuring Consistent Rendition: Cross-browser testing allows developers to assess how the website or application appears in different browsers. It helps identify any inconsistencies in rendering, such as variations in layout, styling, or alignment. By detecting these differences, developers can take steps to ensure consistent rendering across multiple browsers.

Verifying Functionality: Cross-browser testing also validates the functionality and working of the website or application across various browsers. It ensures that all features, interactions, and functionalities work as expected, regardless of the browser used. By conducting comprehensive functionality tests, developers can deliver a consistent and reliable user experience across different browsers.

How do I perform cross-browser testing?

In order to establish a baseline for cross-browser testing, it is crucial to conduct comprehensive design and functionality tests on your primary browser, which is usually Chrome. This step serves as a reference point, enabling you to compare and assess the intended appearance and behavior of the website across various browsers. By establishing this baseline, you can identify any variations or inconsistencies in the rendering and functionality of your website, ensuring a consistent and optimized user experience across different browser environments.

Create a Testing Plan and Browser Selection: Develop a testing plan based on your test specification document. Define the specific elements and functionalities to test. Then, choose browser-OS combinations to test based on their popularity and your site traffic analysis.

Execution: Cross-browser testing can be done manually or automatically. Manual testing involves human testers sequentially executing test scenarios. Automated testing, on the other hand, utilizes code to automate interactions. Automation tools like Selenium allow the creation of test scripts that can be executed on multiple browsers. 

Infrastructure: To simulate various browser and operating system combinations, you need different devices. There are multiple options for setting up your testing infrastructure. You can use emulators, simulators, or virtual machines (VMs) and install browsers on them for testing. This approach is cost-effective but has limitations in scalability and reliability, especially for virtual mobile platforms like Android and iOS.

Benefits of cross-browser testing on the cloud

  • Cost Savings: Setting up and maintaining an in-house testing infrastructure for cross-browser testing can be expensive. By moving cross-browser testing to the cloud, organizations can save on infrastructure setup costs. They only need to pay for the cloud-based services they use, which are often offered at a fraction of the cost.
  • Reliable and Stable Environment: Cloud-based testing platforms provide a reliable and stable testing environment. Unlike on-premise labs, the cloud infrastructure is resistant to disasters and downtime. Additionally, the service provider takes care of upgrades and maintenance, ensuring a consistent and reliable testing environment.
  • Scalability: Cloud-based testing platforms offer the flexibility to scale the testing environment up or down based on requirements. Adding or removing devices, operating systems, and browser combinations can be done easily and quickly with just a few clicks. This scalability allows for efficient testing as per the evolving needs of the project.

LambdaTest is a cloud-based digital experience testing platform that facilitates digital experience testing by allowing users to perform manual and automated testing for their websites and mobile applications. It provides a wide range of browser and operating system options, offering comprehensive testing capabilities across various browser configurations.

One of the key features of LambdaTest is its support for both automated and manual testing. Automated testing allows users to write scripts and execute them simultaneously across multiple browsers, resulting in significant time and effort savings. This automation feature streamlines the testing process and ensures consistent results across different browser configurations.

  • Remote Team Collaboration and Support: Cloud-based testing enables remote teams to collaborate effectively. Team members can access the cloud-device lab from anywhere, facilitating seamless collaboration. Additionally, test reports, cases, and other relevant information can be accessed remotely, promoting efficient teamwork.
  • Parallel and 24×7 Test Execution: Cloud-based testing platforms provide access to a large number of devices 24×7. When combined with test automation, tests can be executed in parallel, significantly reducing test execution time. This enables faster test coverage and helps deliver high-quality products in a shorter time frame.
  • Better Test Coverage: Cloud-based testing platforms promote better test coverage through parallel testing, 24×7 execution, a reliable and stable environment, and the ability to test on a wide range of device combinations. This ensures thorough testing and helps deliver a high-quality product.
  • Faster Product Delivery: Cloud-based testing enables quicker and more efficient testing, ensuring faster product delivery. With reduced infrastructure setup time, parallel execution, and better coverage, organizations can speed up the testing process and meet project timelines effectively.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Cloud-based testing services are often more cost-effective compared to setting up an in-house testing infrastructure. They eliminate the need for hardware and software installation, upgrades, and maintenance, resulting in cost savings. Additionally, cloud testing platforms provide user-friendly interfaces and faster test execution, contributing to increased productivity and reduced rework.


  • Shared Resources and Unavailability of Environment: In a cloud-based testing environment, devices are shared among multiple projects, clients, and teams. This can result in the device you require becoming unavailable, leading to delays and frustration during testing.
  • Internet Dependency: Cloud-based testing relies on a stable internet connection and a browser for testing activities. However, if the internet connection goes down, it can completely block testing activities.
  • Lack of Control and Dependency on Service Provider: When using a cloud-based testing environment, the entire infrastructure, devices, networks, and servers are owned by the service provider. This can result in a lack of control for users, as they may not have direct access to the backend systems and configurations.
  • Migration Challenges: Migrating testing activities to a new vendor can be a complex process if the vendor does not offer flexibility and support for data, information, and test case migration. This can lead to vendor lock-in, where the user is tied to the existing vendor due to migration difficulties.
  • Security and Privacy Concerns: Cloud-based testing involves storing sensitive information and artifacts on external cloud infrastructure owned by third parties. This raises security and privacy concerns, as the data and testing processes are vulnerable to external attacks.

Improve your cross-browser testing

Improving your cross-browser testing involves various strategies and considerations to ensure comprehensive compatibility. One important step is creating a browser matrix, which involves selecting specific browsers and their versions to focus on during the design and testing phase. Trying to ensure compatibility with every browser and version is impractical, so prioritizing the most significant ones is crucial.

To enhance your cross-browser testing, follow these steps for creating an effective browser matrix:

Identify your target audience: Understand the demographics and preferences of your audience. Analyze their browser usage patterns and determine the browsers they commonly use. This knowledge will help you prioritize compatibility testing for the browsers that matter most to your target audience.

Prioritize popular browsers: Focus on the browsers with the highest usage among your target audience. Consider popular options like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, and Microsoft Edge. These browsers typically have a larger user base and may require more attention during testing.

Consider browser version distribution: Take into account the distribution of browser versions among your target audience. Identify the versions that are most commonly used and prioritize compatibility testing for those specific versions. This approach ensures that you address the browsers and versions that are most relevant to your audience.

Stay updated: Continuously monitor the evolving landscape of browsers and their versions. Stay informed about the latest browser releases, updates, and adoption patterns. Regularly review and update your browser matrix to reflect the changing preferences and trends of your target audience.

By following these steps, you can improve your cross-browser testing by focusing on the browsers and versions that have the highest impact on your target audience’s browsing experience.


In order to establish an effective cross-browser testing strategy, it is important to conduct testing throughout the entire development process instead of treating it as a final step. By incorporating regular and iterative testing, developers can detect and address compatibility issues early on, reducing the potential impact on project timelines. Integrating testing into the development workflow enables prompt identification and resolution of issues, resulting in a smoother and more efficient development cycle.

When conducting cross-browser compatibility testing, prioritizing the user experience is paramount. It is essential to ensure that the website not only functions correctly but also delivers an intuitive and user-friendly experience across all browsers. Paying close attention to details such as navigation, responsiveness, form validation, and overall usability plays a vital role in providing a positive experience to all users, irrespective of their chosen browser.

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