In our fast-paced digital environment, software developers are faced with a rapid increase in the number of mobile app downloads. With 230 billion app downloads in 2021, thorough testing is imperative to fix bugs and ensure continuous code functionality. According to the World Quality Report, React Native test automation speeds decision-making by offering fast and reliable results. Automation quickly identifies issues, increases confidence, and saves developers time by automatically running tests after code changes are made. Take advantage of the benefits of automated testing in the dynamic mobile app development era.

Who is this article for?
Developers, testers, and tech enthusiasts in React Native app development.
Key takeaways
  • Prioritize React Native test automation for reliable, bug-free applications.
  • Utilize diverse testing types from unit to end-to-end for effectiveness.
  • Ficus Technologies ensures seamless integration of advanced testing tools.

What is Automation Testing for React Native apps?

Automation Testing for React Native Apps involves using specialized tools and scripts to execute predefined test cases in a software application. This method automates manual testing processes, increasing productivity, accuracy, and repeatability. It verifies software functionality, identifies defects, and ensures compliance with established requirements through test case scenarios. In agile development, automated testing is invaluable for quickly and consistently validating software changes, ensuring the reliability of React Native test automation.

Types of React Native App Testing

The React Native app testing types cover a wide range of methodologies to ensure the reliability of your apps. From fundamental steps like writing tests to comprehensive assessments with unit tests, component tests, integration tests, and end-to-end tests, the testing landscape for React Native test automation is vast. Each type serves a unique purpose, which collectively contributes to the reliability and quality of the final React Native product.

1. Writing Tests

Writing tests is a fundamental step in React Native test automation. To ensure testability, it is very important to structure the code into small modular units rather than a monolithic object. Splitting the program into manageable modules facilitates more thorough testing. Writing testable code is intertwined with creating clean, modular code. This practice creates the basis for effective test automation of React Native processes, improving the overall quality and reliability of the application.

‍2. Unit Tests

Unit tests are key in the React Native test automation landscape, especially for mobile apps. These tests thoroughly validate JavaScript objects and first-level methods, focusing on individual functions and classes to ensure they function properly. Using Jest, a popular framework for testing React applications, is an example of simplicity and efficiency. Consider a simple unit test using Jest where a function adds two numbers:

import { add } from './math';

test('adds 1 + 2 to equal 3', () => {
  expect(add(1, 2)).toBe(3);

Running this test with the Jest team provides quick feedback on its success or failure. While unit tests are great for thoroughly testing isolated code components, it’s important to complement them with integration testing to evaluate how different parts of the code interact in the larger context of a React Native application.

3. Component Tests

Component tests are important pillars in the React Native test automation framework because they thoroughly test the building blocks of applications – React components. While robust business logic testing is crucial, neglecting component testing can result in a flawed user interface. Functional and visual aspects are thoroughly tested during component testing, including user experience and rendering accuracy. Working in the Node.js environment, testing React Native components, unfortunately, cannot provide a full guarantee, as it does not delve into platform-specific code.

4. Integration Tests

Integration tests are important in React Native test automation, especially when working with complex software systems where individual components must interact seamlessly. Integration testing brings these components together, ensuring that their cooperation meets the application’s requirements. Such testing becomes necessary for applications that combine multiple modules, interact with external systems, make network calls to other applications, or perform file and database I/O operations. In React Native, integration tests focus on interactions such as data flows, API calls, and user interface interactions using tools such as react-test-renderer or enzyme.

Consider this example of an integration test for a simple Button component using react-test-renderer:

import React from 'react';
import renderer from 'react-test-renderer';
import Button from './Button';

it('renders correctly', () => {
  const tree = renderer.create(<Button>Click me</Button>).toJSON();

This test takes a snapshot of the original data, ensuring that the component remains consistent across versions. Tools like react-test-renderer allow you to manipulate the rendered component to assert its state and behavior by simulating events such as button clicks. Integration tests ensure that the various elements in a React Native application coordinate seamlessly, increasing overall reliability.

5. End-to-End Tests

End-to-end testing provides a holistic assessment of the functionality of a React Native application from the user’s perspective, ensuring a seamless experience on devices or emulators. Unlike unit testing or integration testing, end-to-end testing evaluates the entire software product, including performance, error handling, and the entire application flow. Detox, a customized framework for React Native, is a popular choice for creating end-to-end tests. It allows developers to interact with the application as users do, exploring states and verifying expected actions with the React Native Debugger.

Let’s look at an example of an end-to-end test for an input stream using Detox:

describe('Login flow', () => {
  beforeEach(async () => {
    await device.reloadReactNative();
  it('should allow the user to login', async () => {
    await expect(element('username'))).toBeVisible();
    await element('username')).typeText('user1');
    await element('password')).typeText('pass1');
    await element('login-button')).tap();
    await expect(element(by.text('Welcome!'))).toBeVisible();

Running this test with React Native Debugger and Detox confirms that the app works properly throughout the login process. While end-to-end tests provide confidence in the overall functionality of an application, they can be time-consuming. Therefore, a balanced approach involving a combination of integration and unit tests is usually preferable, using end-to-end tests wisely for specific scenarios such as performance evaluation with strict response time requirements.

React Native brings the React paradigm to mobile app development. It’s goal isn’t to write the code once and run it on any platform. The goal is to learn-once (the React way) and write-anywhere. An important distinction to make.

Ray Wenderlich

Benefits of Testing React Native Apps

Testing React Native applications provides a number of benefits, increasing overall quality, reliability, and success. 

Here are some of the main benefits:

Detection and prevention of bugs

Bug detection and prevention are at the heart of effective React Native test automation. Testing, especially through automation test React Native app processes, facilitates early detection and correction of errors. This proactive approach prevents problems from entering the production stage, significantly reducing the likelihood of post-release difficulties. A robust testing strategy is crucial for maintaining the reliability and quality of a React Native application throughout its development lifecycle.

Increased Code Quality

Improved code quality directly results from dedicated React Native test automation efforts. Creating test cases encourages engineers to develop modular code that is easy to maintain, improving the code base’s overall quality. This approach not only improves manageability but also makes it easier to extend. Investing in thorough testing of your React Native app pays dividends in terms of code reliability and long-term stability.

Improved User Experience

Improved User Experience stems from meticulous React Native test automation, specifically in the realm of UI testing. Thorough React Native UI testing ensures that the app’s functionality flawlessly meets user expectations, resulting in a more enjoyable and seamless experience for end users. By prioritizing user-centered testing practices, developers contribute significantly to the overall satisfaction and engagement of React Native applications.

Accelerated development cycles

Accelerated development cycles directly result from prioritizing test automation in the React Native continuous integration pipeline. Automated testing helps to identify issues early, which helps to optimize the development process. By quickly identifying issues, professional React Native developers can implement new features or updates without breaking existing functionality. This approach not only speeds up the overall development cycle of a React Native application but also contributes to a more flexible and efficient software development lifecycle.

Consistency across platforms

Consistency across Platforms is paramount in React Native development, facilitated by rigorous React Native test automation. Thanks to the cross-platform capabilities of the framework, comprehensive testing ensures that the application runs smoothly across platforms and devices. This commitment to testing guarantees users a stable and reliable experience, emphasizing the importance of prioritizing automation test React Native app processes to maintain uniformity and functionality across environments.

Assurance of security

Ensuring security is a fundamental result of prioritizing robust React Native test automation. Testing processes play a crucial role in identifying and fixing security flaws, protecting sensitive data, and hardening your application against potential security threats. By integrating security-focused testing into the automation test React Native app strategies, developers ensure a safe and secure environment for user data, strengthening the overall integrity of the React Native application.

Looking for ways to test React Native apps?

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Automated testing tools are crucial for maintaining the optimal health of React Native applications. These tools cover many tests, from static analysis to end-to-end testing. The next section will discuss five well-known tools specifically designed for React Native test automation.

1. Appium


Appium, a key test automation tool for React Native, is great for automating native, mobile web, and hybrid apps on iOS, Android, and Windows. This open-source tool uses the WebDriver protocol to act as a server to interpret commands from scripts into instructions for mobile devices. Among the features of Appium are the following:

  • Cross-platform compatibility: Allows you to create tests for iOS, Android, and Windows using a unified API.
  • Specialized drivers: Platform-specific drivers support seamless automation in different environments.
  • No source code required: Test your React apps without using source code.
  • Cross-platform support: Run the same test cases on different platforms.
  • Parallel execution: Allows parallel execution of test scripts.
  • Language support: Supports languages such as C#, Python, Java, Ruby, PHP, and JavaScript via node.js.

‍2. Detox

detox logo

Detox, an advanced React Native test automation framework, was developed by Wix to solve important problems in mobile UI testing. Known for solving sluggishness and flaking issues, Detox excels at end-to-end testing. The main features include:

  • Asynchronous performance monitoring: It makes it easy to find asynchronous elements in the user interface of an application.
  • Gray box testing: Gains access to code and data from mobile applications, expanding testing capabilities.
  • CI system integration: Easily connects to various CI systems and popular cloud-based testing services.
  • Fast feedback: Provides fast feedback on end-to-end testing, ensuring efficient test cycles.

3. Jest

jest logo

Jest, an open-source React Native test automation framework built on JavaScript, is primarily focused on testing React and React Native web applications. Overcoming the problems of time-consuming testing of front-end modules, Jest simplifies the process with a user-friendly API, providing faster results. This framework tests various aspects of JavaScript, including browser rendering. Jest is widely used to automate browser testing, offering a robust combination of assertion library, test runner, and built-in simulation library. Its features include the following:

  • Speed and performance: Enables fast and efficient testing.
  • Pre-fixed Hooks: Facilitates seamless integration with pre-committed workflows.
  • Easy migration: Simplifies migration processes for increased usability.
  • Additional features and configurations: Provides flexibility with advanced features and customizable options.

‍4. Karma


Karma, a node-based tool for React Native test automation, stands out for its ability to run tests on real browsers and devices, ensuring reliable and robust testing. Recognizing the importance of different browsers and their diverse DOM implementations, Karma provides core testing capabilities to ensure broad user compatibility. With a focus on accelerating test-driven development, Karma offers a productive testing environment where developers receive instant feedback. Notable features include:

  • Remote management: Allows remote control of test execution.
  • Easy debugging: Facilitates debugging via WebStorm, IDE, or Google Chrome.
  • Perfect integration: Supports seamless integration into continuous integration workflows.

5. Jasmine

Jasmine logo

Jasmine, an open-source JavaScript testing framework, is a versatile tool for testing various JavaScript applications, including those built with React Native. Focused on React Native test automation, Jasmine excels at automated unit testing, which is an important practice for modern web applications. Using the Behavior Driven Development (BDD) approach, Jasmine provides thorough unit testing of each JavaScript statement. Independent of browsers, DOMs, or specific JavaScript frameworks, Jasmine supports standalone and node.js versions. Among the features that deserve attention are the following:

  • Independence: Functions independently of other JavaScript frameworks.
  • DOM-Free: This does not depend on browsers or the document object model (DOM).
  • Clean syntax: Uses clean and clear syntax for efficient testing.

How to Test React Native Apps

Learn the ins and outs of React Native test automation by diving into clearly defined steps. They cover scoping, scripting, execution with your chosen tools, and maintenance. Achieve consistent, reliable results and adapt to evolving software by providing robust automated testing for React Native applications.

Choosing a Tool

Choosing the right test automation tool for React Native requires carefully evaluating your testing requirements and compatibility with the software development platform. Ensure the tool you choose meets your React Native test automation goals and integrates seamlessly into your development process. Making an informed decision based on these considerations is crucial to implementing an effective and efficient testing strategy for React Native application development.

Definition of Scope

Defining the scope of React Native test automation involves clearly defining the components of software testing that are to be automated. This includes defining automated aspects such as test cases, functionality, and scripts. Having a clear scope ensures a focused and efficient approach to test automation for React Native applications, helping to optimize processes and achieve optimal test results.

Design, planning, and development

In the field of React Native test automation, this stage involves defining goals and approaches to the UI testing strategy. It includes carefully designing and developing efficient test scripts tailored to the defined scope. This process provides a structured and efficient approach to automating testing in React Native applications, contributing to the overall success of the test lifecycle and the development of high-quality, reliable applications.

Testing Execution

This important step involves using your chosen React Native test automation tool to execute carefully crafted test scenarios. By ensuring repeatability and consistency in test case execution, these tools collect comprehensive data and generate detailed test results. The focus is on using test automation for React Native applications to verify functionality, identify potential issues, and improve the overall quality and reliability of the application under test.


This continuous phase involves regularly updating and adjusting automated test scripts to keep them up to date with evolving software versions. To ensure ongoing efficiency and accuracy of results, it is important that the React Native test automation procedure is synchronized with the dynamic nature of the software. Proactively maintaining these automated processes helps ensure the reliability, relevance, and ongoing success of automated testing of React Native applications in an ever-changing software landscape.


So, using React Native test automation is crucial to navigating the ever-changing landscape of mobile app development. As the demand for apps increases, thorough testing becomes indispensable. From writing fundamental tests to performing comprehensive end-to-end evaluations, a comprehensive approach to testing helps improve code quality, accelerate development cycles, and increase user satisfaction. The robust suite of automation test React Native app tools, including Appium, Detox, Jest, Karma, and Jasmine, enables developers to ensure consistent functionality, improve security, and guarantee the success of their apps.

Ficus Technologies is at the forefront of effective test automation for React Native apps. With a wealth of experience, Ficus Technologies offers customized solutions to integrate advanced testing tools into your development process seamlessly. From scoping and designing effective test scripts to test execution and ongoing maintenance, Ficus Technologies provides comprehensive support to help you realize the full potential of automation test React Native app strategies. Improve your app development journey with Ficus Technologies, ensuring reliability, security, and success.

What makes React Native unique?

React Native stands out for its unique ability to facilitate cross-platform mobile app development with a single codebase. Developed by Facebook, it allows developers to write code in JavaScript and React and then deploy it on both iOS and Android platforms. This streamlines the development process and ensures consistency in app performance and appearance across different devices. React Native’s “write once, run anywhere” approach and hot-reloading feature for faster development cycles make it a powerful and efficient framework. Its strong community support, frequent updates, and vast ecosystem contribute to its uniqueness in the mobile app development landscape.

What is a node-based tool?

A node-based tool refers to software or applications built on or utilizing Node.js, a server-side JavaScript runtime. Node.js enables developers to run JavaScript code outside the browser, making it suitable for server-side scripting and building scalable network applications. In the context of test automation, node-based tools often leverage Node.js to execute tests efficiently, offering features like parallel execution, remote management, and seamless integration into continuous integration workflows. An example of a node-based tool is Karma, which excels in running tests on real browsers and devices, ensuring reliable and robust testing for applications built on platforms like React Native.

Sergey Miroshnychenko
My company has assisted hundreds of businesses in scaling engineering teams and developing new software solutions from the ground up. Let’s connect.