WebdriverIO – A Step-by-Step Comprehensive Guide with Examples

We will be starting a new series for WebDriverIO, a next-generation tool for end-to-end testing in the browser or mobile automation support for NodeJS. It can be used:

  • For modern applications developed in React, Vue, Svelte, Preact, Solid, Lit, and other frontend frameworks.
  • Real mobile device testing is made possible using Appium and it further supports smart TVs and other IoT devices. It can be used to run tests on hybrid or native mobile applications running on emulators/simulators and/or real devices.
  • It can be used to automate native desktop applications written in Electron.js
  • No more waiting for elements, WebDriverIO gives the in-built feature of auto wait. It waits for the element before it performs the next action.
  • Cross-browser is supported by WebDriver and WebDriver BiDi.

Other automation tools require either downloading a modified browser engine not used by a real user or injecting JavaScript to emulate user behaviour.

You can also run all your tests on any of the cloud environments as well like LambdaTest, SauceLabs, and BrowserStack.

Compared to many automation tools in the ecosystem, WebdriverIO is a true open-source project, operated under open governance and owned by a non-profit organization called the OpenJS Foundation. It’s a very popular automation tool with more than 7.9K stars and a 2.2K fork on GitHub. The package consists of a large number of Helper, Reporter, Services, Runner, and Framework Adaptors. It’s so popular that everyone is contributing their bit and writing boilerplate which is on WebDriverIO documentation as well.

Selenium vs WebdriverIO

Selenium and WebdriverIO are both automation frameworks for web applications, but they have some differences. Here are some of the key differences between Selenium and WebdriverIO:

  1. Programming languages: Selenium supports multiple programming languages, including Java, Python, and C#. WebdriverIO, on the other hand, is built on top of Node.js and supports JavaScript and TypeScript.
  2. Ease of use: WebdriverIO has a simpler and more intuitive API compared to Selenium, which can make it easier to use for beginners.
  3. Cross-browser testing: Both Selenium and WebdriverIO support cross-browser testing, but WebdriverIO provides a more seamless experience by providing built-in support for browser drivers and configurations.
  4. Community support: Both Selenium and WebdriverIO have active communities, but WebdriverIO’s community is smaller and more focused on specific use cases, such as testing React applications.
  5. Additional features: WebdriverIO provides additional features like visual regression testing and integrations with other testing frameworks, like Cucumber and Mocha.

Overall, the choice between Selenium and WebdriverIO depends on your specific use case and preferences. If you’re already familiar with a programming language that Selenium supports or need a more robust solution, then Selenium may be the better choice. If you’re looking for a simpler and more lightweight option or need a specific feature that WebdriverIO provides, then WebdriverIO may be the better choice.

Which is fast Selenium or WebdriverIO?

When it comes to speed, both Selenium and WebdriverIO perform similarly, as they both use the Selenium WebDriver API to interact with web browsers. However, the performance can vary based on a few factors, such as the complexity of the tests and the speed of the internet connection.

It’s important to note that the performance of the test automation framework is not the only factor that affects the overall speed of your test suite. The speed of your tests can also be impacted by other factors such as the size and complexity of the application being tested, the hardware and network configuration of the test environment, and the efficiency of the test scripts themselves.

To optimize the performance of your test automation suite, it’s important to follow best practices such as writing efficient and maintainable code, using parallelization to run tests simultaneously across multiple instances, and minimizing the number of test cases by focusing on high-priority test scenarios.

In summary, both Selenium and WebdriverIO are fast and perform similarly. The overall speed of your test suite will depend on several factors, including the complexity of your tests, the size and complexity of your application, and the efficiency of your test scripts.

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