Software testing is an essential part of the whole software development cycle. With an ever-growing number of devices and operating systems, guaranteeing flawless functionality across multiple platforms can be daunting. Appium is one such tool that can minimize this complex testing task.

Appium is an open-source mobile app testing tool for software automation testing for iOS and Android devices. The release of Appium 2.0 aims to create an extensive and easy-to-use environment for mobile app testing and facilitate adaptation to the dynamic app industry. Desired Capabilities in Appium helps QAs instruct the Appium server about the preferred mobile platform to be used as the test environment.

In this article, first, you will see the introduction of Appium and various aspects of it. Then, you will see the desired capabilities in Appium for mobile app testing.

Introduction to Appium

Appium is a mobile app testing tool that is very popular among the QA team and software application developers. It allows testing for both hybrid and native applications for iOS and Android devices. Appium on cloud for mobile app testing extends this flexibility by taking advantage of cloud computing’s benefits for testing purposes. Testing through the cloud offers many key benefits, particularly access to real devices and emulators, allowing thorough cross-device, screen size, and operating system testing without extensive in-house device lab setup costs or time savings.

Appium on Cloud also offers parallel testing through the simultaneous execution of multiple test cases – speeding up testing while increasing coverage. Companies using Appium can significantly decrease the time it takes them to bring apps to market while creating competitive advantages through this strategy.

To perform Appium on the cloud, using a cloud-based platform is recommended. One such platform is LambdaTest. LambdaTest is an AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform to run manual and automated tests at scale. The platform allows you to perform real-time and automation testing across 3000+ environments and real mobile devices.

On this platform, you can seamlessly conduct real device cloud testing across various platforms and devices in our cutting-edge mobile device labs. Choose from multiple mobile devices with different versions, all available on LambdaTest’s extensive testing lab.

This comprehensive selection empowers you to simulate user experiences on various devices, ensuring your applications or websites perform optimally across different platforms and device versions. The flexibility of testing on real devices on a wide range of mobile device labs provides a robust and accurate assessment, helping you deliver a polished and reliable digital experience to your users.

Key Features of Appium

Multi-Language Support

Appium mobile app testing tool supports many programming languages such as Java, JavaScript, Perl, Python, Ruby, C, etc. It also supports Selenium WebDriver API, which helps the QA team perform excellently for various frameworks and platforms. The testing team can write the test scripts using their preferred programming languages.

This helps a lot to save time writing test scripts. This way, our web developers can work with the language of their choice, eliminating the need for training and retraining staff.


As we know, the Appium tool supports a vast range of programming languages. Thus, it makes it more scalable, and due to this reason, it reduces the cost of setup for several platforms during the integration. Also, customers can leverage the app without recording or recomputing, which is more cost-effective.

Cross-Platform Compatibility

Appium is a great tool that supports cross-platform mobile app testing. It allows the developers and QA team to use this tool for iOS and Android devices. With Selenium WebDriver, Appium uses the JSON wire protocols to communicate with iOS and Android devices. With the use of an instructions program, Appium uses the libraries that.

Apple makes it accessible for the automation of iOS applications. Similarly, Appium uses a proxy to send the automation command to the UI Automator test case, which is now executing on Android devices. Appium uses the UI Automator, which fully supports the JUnit test cases, to automate the apps on Android app performance testing tools.


One of the main reasons it is trendy for mobile app testing is because it is open-source. The open-source framework of Appium allows testing on real devices, emulators, and simulators. It makes it easy for the new automation testing engineers to get their solution in Appium. All because of the open-source availability and vibrant community.

Vibrant Community Support

Appium is a viral and powerful mobile app testing tool. Appium is becoming very popular among mobile application developers due to its cross-platform support and various features. Apart from this, the active community team consistently works to find and fix any errors. There is a good presence of developers and testers in the community that continuously helps you increase your software’s functionalities and features. Also, online research papers and tutorials about Kotlin and its features, like Kotlin multiplatform, are available online.

Installing Appium

To perform the mobile app testing with Appium, you need to make an environment in your system. Given below are the steps that need to be followed to set up the environment:

  1. First, you need to install the JDK (Java Development Kit) that helps set the Java variables in your system.
  2. Then, you need to install the IDE (Integrated Development Kit). You can install the IDE according to your comfort and choice. Some popular IDEs are Eclipse and VS Code.
  3. After that, you need to install the Appium framework. You can install it by using the CLI (Command-line Interface), or you can also install the desktop application for Appium.
  4. Then, install the required files, such as drivers, Android SDK, etc., to help execute the testing process for Android and iOS.
  5. Then, do some necessary configuration setups for Appium, such as device name, path for the files, platform versions, etc.

You can install the set-ups for Appium and execute further mobile app testing using the above steps.

Architecture of Appium

The architecture of Appium follows a client/server model. The server is built on the Node.js platform. It comprises REST API and implementing Selenium WebDriver. The Appium framework bridges a test script and a mobile application running on a physical device or an emulator/simulator. There are three components of Appium architecture, which are as follows:

Appium Client

This component of Appium consists of language-specific libraries or SDKs. These SDKs help the developers create test automation test scripts using Appium. In multiple programming languages, these client libraries provide various methods for tasks such as locating elements, interacting with UI components, executing gestures, validating expected behaviors, etc.

Appium Server

It works as a bridge in the framework, making mobile application automation possible in the Appium server. The Appium server creates a link between the mobile application and the test script, regardless of whether the application runs in an emulator or on an actual device. Initially, the test script sends commands to the server, which converts them into automation actions specific to the various targeted mobile device types using REST API. Using Selenium WebDriver’s robust functionalities, the Appium server establishes communication with the mobile application and executes tasks such as element identification, user interface interaction, gesture emulation, behavior validation, etc.

End Device

When you are talking about the End device, it refers to the various emulators and simulators or a real device connected to the server where the automated tests are executed. These devices play a significant role as they help validate the testing parameters, such as performance and functionalities of the software application.

Desired Capabilities of Appium for Customized Mobile App Testing

The desired capabilities are defined as the set of instructions that you give to Appium before it starts the mobile app testing process. The provided set of instructions helps direct the Appium and allows the QA team to understand how the testing session should be set up for the Appium.

Appium’s desired capabilities consist of various details, such as information about the target device, platform, application, and other essential settings for the test. Desired capabilities help Appium connect to the appropriate mobile device or emulator and configure it accordingly. To understand the desired capabilities of Appium better, let us take an example. Below is an example of Desired Capabilities in Appium represented as a JSON object.


“platformName”: “Android”,

“platformVersion”: “10.0”,

“deviceName”: “Samsung Galaxy Note10”,

“automationName”: “Appium”,

“app”: “path for the app under test”


The above-mentioned desired capability instructs the drivers to start the automation testing session for that specific application, as you can see from the device specification in the above JSON object, which is the device name “Samsung Galaxy Note10” and Android version “10.0”. As we know, Appium supports both iOS and Android and has unique capabilities for both platforms. Below is the table that shows the commonly used capabilities of Appium for Android and iOS.

Appium Common Capabilities in Android

appPackageIt represents the Java package of the specific Android app that will go under the mobile app,    
appActivityIt represents the name of that specific activity that will be launched from the package. You can use the dot ( . ) to proceed with this capability..MainActivity, .Settings    
appWaitPackageIt represents the Java package of the Android app to wait,
browserNameIt represents the name of the mobile web browser that will be automated during the mobile app testing.‘Safari’ for iOS

Appium Common Capabilities in iOS

udidIt is defined as the unique identifier of the physically connected device.e.g 1ae203187fc012g
autoAcceptAlertsThis capability accepts all the iOS alerts automatically if they appear as pop-ups. The default value for this capability is false.true or false
safariInitialUrlIt is the initial URL that will get loaded. The default URL redirects to a local home page.e.g.


Appium is an open-source mobile app testing tool for software automation testing for iOS and Android devices. Appium on Cloud like lambdaTest also offers parallel testing through the simultaneous execution of multiple test cases – speeding up testing while increasing coverage. It also saves time and increases the mobile app testing efficiency. There are various features of Appium for mobile app testing, such as multi-language support, open-source, etc.

The desired capabilities are defined as the set of instructions that you give to Appium before it starts the mobile app testing process. The various Appium standard capabilities in iOS are udid, safariInitialUrl, etc. The different Appium standard capabilities in Android are appActivity, appPackage, etc.