Globalization Testing

What is globalization testing?

For a software to be having a totally global appeal, it is necessary for it to be of such robust built that it can be used by people belonging to different backgrounds, nations and linguistic communities. Keeping this in mind, globalization testing is used to determine if a software product is capable of being used across different territories, countries, locations and cultures.

What's tested under globalization testing?

For a product to have a universal user subscriber base, it is important to test for some of its key parameters which enable its usage over a worldwide scale. Some of them are:

  1. Countrywide format of zip code.
  2. Date & Time format for different countries.
  3. Format for storing of telephone numbers with their addresses.
  4. Intricacies of the transaction system with different currencies.
  5. Coding and decoding activities for the purposes of conversion.
  6. Aspects related to GUI.

How is globalization testing carried out?

Globalization testing is carried out by undertaking the following set of actions:

  1. Some of the product features have to be muted or turned OFF owing to switching between different locales having varied cultural sensitivities. The product is tested if it is actually switching these features between diverse locales.
  2. Multilingual applications require different storage & retrieval capacities which are tested for globalization testing.
  3. The functionality of the product is tested with language settings other than English.
  4. The product is tested for working with different date formats. For example, the date format used in the United States is slightly different to the one used in the rest of the world which follows the format used in United Kingdom.
  5. Since each country has its own currency, the software product needs to inculcate a transaction system which can allow exchange of money not limited to a single nation's currency. Globalization testing allows for testing the efficacy of such a transaction system.
  6. Globalization testing ensures the correct displaying of all the supported scripts with their correct associations of characters, their combinations according to their context, etc.
  7. Globalization testing also looks for issues related to success of file transaction process. For example, in the event of absence of encoding specification, the product forces the user with default encoding which leads to wrong interpretation of data. Globalization testing attempts to restrict such possibilities by making sure there is specification for all types of encoding in the product.
  8. This testing ensures support for all kinds of characters by making available unique data types depending on the kind of database.

The feeding of all the other inputs which are unique for different countries are checked for expected response.

Benefits of Globalization testing

  1. Similar to how localization testing affects the cost of testing, Globalization testing also helps in reducing the overall cost in testing of product.
  2. Since globalization testing helps in guaranteeing the fool proof functioning of those aspects of a software product which enable it to be used by people from different nationalities and speaking different languages, it aids in maintaining the brand value of the software product.
  3. Support costs of the software product are reduced.
  4. Globalization testing enables software to be used in diverse languages without having the need to redesign the entire software code.