How to Upload and Retrieve Files on Real Devices?

How to Upload and Retrieve Files on Real Devices?
Man passing file to colleague

Real device testing is one of the most important parameters when application developers are working with mobile devices. This is because the mobile market is one of the most diverse segments that have a uniqueness in terms of screen size, display resolution, user interface parameters, and hardware configurations. Moreover, thousands of mobile devices arrive on the market annually. There are various parameters that the application developers can implement to improve the accuracy and dependability of the real device test results. Certain mobile automation testing tools like Appium allow the integration of cloud-based platforms for further improving the simplicity of real device testing with the help of remote servers.

So, with this article, we are going to explore how application developers can upload and retrieve files on real devices. We will also explore the process of simplifying real device testing with the integration of modern technologies like cloud platforms.

 The Portable Device Market and Automation Testing

 The primary reason for the popularity of mobile devices is portability. This is because, with mobile devices like tablets, smartwatches, and smartphones, the end users can achieve computer-like performance on a pocket-size form factor. We can analyze the rise in mobile devices with the fact that more than 53% of the total Internet traffic comes from mobile devices. The three most popular mobile platforms include iOS, Android, and Windows. Android is the leading computer with a market share of over 70%. Therefore it becomes almost impossible for the app developers to either restrict the test cases to emulation software or generalize the testing parameters.

The integration of automation testing can boost the efficiency and quality of mobile app test cases. This is because, with the implementation of test automation, the system will automatically mimic human interactions using predetermined parameters in test files. However, the app developers have complete freedom to change these parameters to customize the test reports according to their project. let us now briefly analyze the role of test automation:

Test automation runs all the repetitive test cases allowing the application developers to focus on creative areas in the app development project. For example, the testing team and development team can work together to create new features for future app updates.

Automation testing generates detailed test reports that allows the company to understand whether the application is stable enough to be forwarded to the production phase. It also eliminates all the errors that can arise due to human involvement in the test case execution process. 

 Using test automation, it is possible to conduct thousands of different test configurations within a few days with the help of parallel test execution. Parallel test execution uses the concept of a hub connected to several notes which are in turn represented by the web elements. So after receiving the test case, the system will automatically forward it to the target node.

We recommend the application development teams consider automation testing as a long-term investment to realize its benefits. This is because it will benefit the company resources by eliminating the requirements of a manual testing team.

 LambdaTest and its Role in Real Device Testing

The process to set up and maintain an on-site real device lab is not only expensive but also a long process. Companies can eliminate this step with the help of cloud-based platforms like LambdaTest that can initiate automated real-device test cases on remote servers. While using LambdaTest for Appium-based mobile test cases, the app developers can initiate them on thousands of different browsers and devices at the same time. LambdaTest combines hundreds of test reports from real devices and simulation software to boost the accuracy of the final Test suit.

LambdaTest benefits the process of modern real device testing in the following ways:

The LambdaTest real device cloud boosts the accuracy of real device testing with thousands of legacy devices and older versions of popular browsers. This feature will help you to expand the possible audience base as a huge segment does not update their hardware or software.

This cloud also keeps track of all the failed and successful test cases using a real-time activity log. This log will also act as a reference point so that the app developers can access data about the previously conducted test cases and the bugs that were detected.

 While performing real device testing, the app developers will come across instances when they might need access to sample test data for verifying the accuracy of the application. So LambdaTest allows the app developers to upload and retrieve files using the LambdaTest API. This platform also has native data files including media logs to emulate human interactions on the application.

Finally, the test reports generated by LambdaTest consist of videos, screenshots, and test data to improve their readability. This report will also automatically highlight all the faults, common bugs, and errors that have been detected during the test case execution process.

 Need to Upload and Retrieve Files on Real Devices

As we already mentioned earlier, real device testing allows the application developers to verify the functioning of the app when it is subjected to real-world parameters. Some of the most important physical parameters include low battery, unstable bandwidth, and various forms of user interaction errors. So, it is very important for the application developers to properly configure these parameters before executing the test cases. The process of uploading and retrieving files allows the application developers to automatically upload all the configuration files for the testing infrastructure. This process will in turn allow the system to automatically direct the test cases according to the target devices and browsers.

Uploading and Retrieving Files During Real Device Testing

By integrating LambdaTest with the real device testing process, the application developers can simplify the process of uploading and retrieving files while performing these test cases. So for the simplicity of the new automation testers and developers, we have listed the prerequisites and steps in the required order:


 First, app developers need to create and set up their LambdaTest account by navigating to the official website and following the instructions. After purchasing the required license, they will receive all the credentials for accessing the LambdaTest real device testing cloud.

Next, the app developers must choose their preferred programming languages that are supported not only by Appium but also by LambdaTest. Some of the popular options include JavaScript, Python, Ruby, and many others. It is also important to collect adequate information about the programming language to utilize all of its features.

Finally, the application developer should go through the official documentation of LambdaTest and Appium to have an idea about all the features and methods that are supported by both of them. On the official website, the application developers will also find sample test cases that will elaborate on the functioning of the core infrastructure. Finally, LambdaTest also has an elaborate blog about all the common errors that can arise during the test case execution process. This information will help the testers to avoid such instances.

 Uploading Files on Real Devices

Although LambdaTest provides a set of preloaded data and media files that should be sufficient for almost all the general testing requirements, in certain instances the app developers might need access to certain files. These files could include some critical customized parameters that are unique to the app development project. So the application developers can easily upload these files in the LambdaTest directory and use them during the test execution process. For this step, they have to use the Appium push file command that will allow them to copy any file into the target folder.

Retrieving Files on Real Devices

 In case the application developers are working with an app that allows them to save a file to real devices, they want to retrieve that file for later operations. It is very easy to perform this process using Appium’s native pull command. However, the application developers must remember that the functionality of the pull command will vary depending on their platform like Android or iOS.


 While working with the Android platform, the application developers can use the pull and push feature of Appium. For this process, they simply have to copy the files and retrieve them from the given folders where the file has been previously stored. The following code snippet will elaborate on the process of retrieving a file on real Android devices:

On the iOS platform, the application developers have to follow a given order of steps to retrieve a file on real devices:

The first step is to copy and save the files in the app’s native document folder that will be available on the real device.

 Next, the application developers and testers must ensure that the “UIFileSharingEnabled” key is mentioned as True in the “info.plist” file.

While navigating to the destination file for retrieving the data format, the application developers must follow the specific format and use the push feature:

 While working on the process of uploading and retrieving files on real mobile devices, the application developers must remember to name the test cases according to the target elements. This process will help them to assign the files properly without any confusion. LambdaTest also provides 24-hour support that the application developers and testers can use whenever they are stuck with any step in this process. Appium also has a huge community of tech lovers who are always ready to assist newcomers in this market.

 The Final Verdict

 The process to upload and retrieve files while performing real device testing will allow the application developers to ensure that the system configures the test cases properly to provide accurate results. As application developers and testers, we all can agree that the market will continue to increase its dependency on automation testing practices. So we should try our best to keep our information and knowledge updated regarding all the new trends and innovations in the segment of test automation. It is also important to constantly collect information about the target audience and the market so that it is possible to customize the application for improving compatibility. Finally, the developers must choose the correct tool that can suit the requirements of the project and their preferences.