Heathrow Airport Guide app - a quality app


The Heathrow Airport Guide application was developed by AQuA Member DMI (formerly Golden Gekko) to provide assistance to almost 190,000 average daily passengers at Heathrow Airport- London’s main airport and the fifth busiest airport in the world. 

We asked them about the specific challenges they met from a quality perspective .... What was the background of the project?

Heathrow Airport Guide application was developed to provide assistance to almost 190,000 average daily passengers at Heathrow Airport- London’s main airport and the fifth busiest airport in the world. The app delivers the following features to ensure that every passenger has a pleasant journey to and through the airport:

  • Ability to see all of the active arriving and departing flights
  • Displaying the details of the flight with real-time status
  • Searching for future flights
  • Adding a flight to My Trips and receiving push notifications whenever there are changes in the flight status
  • Airport Guide with terminal maps and list of shops and restaurants
  • City Guide (including weather information)
  • Transportation guide to and from the airport
  • Book car parking

The app was originally optimized for all platforms (Blackberry, Windows Phone, Android smartphones and tablets and iPhones and iPads). However, the client decided to pursue further developments only on the 2 major Operating system: Android and iOS.

How was QA carried out? What is the strategy?

We followed our standard QA process in testing this app. Test Cases were created and executed to ensure that the functional requirements were implemented correctly. User-experience (UX) testing was also performed to verify compliance with the design and to ensure smooth/easy navigation through the app. Moreover, the app’s performance was reviewed across all platforms to guarantee that the standard response time was achieved.

We also did exploratory testing to further check the app’s quality by performing ‘out-of-the-box’ test scenarios.

AQuA Test Criteria was a huge help to us in ensuring the stability of the app and its adherence to the User Interface standards. We initially had issues on readability, read time, UI consistency, application speed and error messages. We also discovered that the app was not too stable when there is unexpected loss of internet connection or when pressing on different buttons while the app is still downloading data from the server. We managed to resolve those issues before we released the app in the market. Furthermore, since one of the core features of the app is the push notification whenever there are changes in the flight status, we made sure that the user still receives the notifications even if the app is kept in the background or in idle mode which is also part of the AQuA Test Criteria.

How did it contribute the app’s success?

We believe that the quality of the app is the major contributory factor to its huge success, with 200,000+ iOS and almost 150,000 Android downloads to date.

Because of the many benefits it provides the passengers, the client has requested Golden Gekko’s help for four years now to further enhance the app’s performance and user-experience by taking the design to the next level and introducing new features.

The app’s nomination in the recently concluded Marketing On Mobile Award (MOMA) under Travel/ Leisure/ Sports Mobile strategy also proves that the app is one of the best on its category. Apple also chose to include the app in its presentation at Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference in July 2014 which is another milestone for the app.

What were the learnings?

We learned that as a major player in mobile app development, we should always adhere to industry standards and incorporate quality in our app so it will be successful and withstand the strong competition in the market - the app’s number of downloads is a testament to its quality.

Continuous adaptation to the latest Operating system is also necessary to make sure that the app will also be compatible in latest devices which will also broaden the app’s user coverage. We also learned to be flexible to the client’s demands because we are partners in developing an extra-ordinary app that will make the lives of the passengers easier and provide a better travel experience.


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