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February 26, 2018

Top 5 iOS Test Automation Frameworks

Mobile Application Testing

What are the best iOS test automation frameworks? Find out. Here, we break down the top five iOS testing frameworks.

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Top 5 iOS Test Automation Frameworks

The top five iOS test automation frameworks are:

  1. XCTest
  2. XCUITest
  3. KIF
  4. Earlgrey
  5. Cucumberish



XCTest is Apple’s official framework for writing unit tests for classes and components at any level. These tests, like the app itself, can be written in Swift/Objective C.

XCTest for iOS automation testing



XCUITest is a UI testing framework that is built on top of XCTest. It includes additional classes (such as UIAccessibility). These tests can be written in Swift or Objective C. The tests are packaged in a test ipa (iOS packaged application) runner that executes the tests on the AUT(application under test) ipa.

XCUITest iOS test automation framework


KIF (Keep It Functional)

KIF is an iOS native app that wraps XCTest as well using undocumented iOS APIs. It requires the developer to add the KIF framework to the project. It has a simple and intuitive syntax.

[tester enterText:@"[email protected]" intoViewWithAccessibilityLabel:@"Login User Name"];
[tester enterText:@"thisismypassword" intoViewWithAccessibilityLabel:@"Login Password"];



Similar to KIF although developed by Google. EarlGrey has an advanced a synchronization mechanism which means you don’t need explicit waits/sleeps. (For example, if tapping a button triggers a network request, EarlGrey will wait for the network request to finish before proceeding with the test). EarlGrey uses matchers extensively (read selection API), these give you the flexibility to interact with elements and write assertion logic in a variety of ways with simple APIs.



Cucumberish is a test automation framework for Behavior Driven Development (BDD) that integrates into XCode and uses the iOS interfaces XCTest/XCUITest.


Cucumberish for iOS test automation


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What's the Best iOS Testing Framework?

The best iOS testing framework depends on your needs:

  • XCTest is the best for unit tests.
  • XCUITest is the best for UI testing. 
  • KIF and Earlgrey are the best for API testing.
  • Cucumberish is the best for BDD testing.

In all likelihood, you'll be working with multiple iOS testing frameworks to build a successful automation strategy. 

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Why iOS Test Automation Is Important

iOS test automation is important to deliver successful apps at rapid paces. 

Leveraging iOS test automation frameworks and tools is the only way to meet user expectations ahead of your competitors. When you automate testing for iOS apps, you'll find bugs faster and get faster feedback, so your team can stay ahead of schedule.

This is especially important, as new versions of iOS are continuously released. 

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How to Maximize iOS Test Automation

To get the most out of iOS test automation, you'll need the right tools. 

Perfecto can help you automate iOS testing and ensure the highest quality apps (and future five star apps). Perfecto provides: 

  • Enterprise-grade mobile app testing.
  • Comprehensive mobile test coverage.
  • A secure and scalable testing cloud.
  • Zero maintenance testing for real devices and simulators/emulators.

Plus, Perfecto integrates with your iOS test automation frameworks. For example, check out Perfecto's XCUITest integration

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Use iOS Testing Frameworks With Perfecto

Perfecto recently released advanced support for the above iOS testing frameworks. This enables development teams to utilize the advantages of iOS test automation while also leveraging Perfecto’s cloud-based capabilities.

Ready to try iOS test automation with Perfecto? Get your free trial today.

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