A Step-by-Step Guide to Testing Android Apps Using Espresso

If you’re an Android developer, you’ve likely experienced the challenge of creating high-quality apps. Developing an app is only half of the equation; during the testing process, you need to make sure your app performs as it should. This is where testing tools like Espresso come into play.

Espresso is an open-source testing framework developed by Google specifically for testing Android apps. It’s a great tool that allows you to quickly and easily create reliable and repeatable automation tests on your phone or tablet apps. This article will provide a step-by-step guide to help you get started with Espresso.

What You Need to Get Started

Before you can start testing your Android apps with Espresso, there are a few things you need to have in place. First, you need to make sure that your Android SDK is up-to-date. You’ll also need the Android Support Library and the latest Espresso library in order to use the Espresso tools.

Next, you’ll need to set up an Android device or emulator for testing. For real device testing, you’ll need an actual device such as a phone or tablet running the Android platform. Alternatively, you can use an Android emulator to simulate different hardware configurations and Android versions.

Finally, there are a few third-party libraries that will help your Espresso tests run better. These include Firebase Test Lab, Robolectric, and the Android Testing Support Library.

Step 1: Setting Up the Project

The first step to using Espresso is to configure your Android Studio projects. You’ll need to add the appropriate libraries and dependencies to your build.gradle file. This can be done manually or by using the built-in configuration wizard.

Once your build.gradle file is configured for Espresso, you’ll need to create your test package. This is where you’ll write your automated tests and can be created with the Espresso command-line tool. With this setup in place, you’re ready to start writing your tests.

Step 2: Writing Espresso Tests

Now you’re ready to start writing Espresso tests. This can be done with either Java or Kotlin, though the syntax is slightly different for each language. With Espresso, you create tests by composing sequences of commands for each element you want to test. These commands include onView(), check(), and typeText().

When creating your tests, you can use the Matcher API to check for specific content. For example, you can use Matchers to check for the presence of a certain string or the existence of a particular element. You can also use Matchers in conjunction with onView() and check() commands to perform more complex validations.

Step 3: Debugging Espresso Tests

Debugging your tests is an important part of the development cycle. Espresso provides a few different tools to help you identify and fix issues with your tests. First, it provides a logcat function that can be used to monitor test performance and detect errors. You can also enable logging to further refine and debug your tests.

The Espresso Test Recorder can also be used as a debugging tool. This is a tool that records your interactions with the app, including touch and swipe gestures. This helps you identify elements and interactions that may be causing issues and allows you to replicate those errors for further debugging.

Step 4: Running your Tests

Once you’ve written and debugged your tests, it’s time to run them on your target device or emulator. If you’ve set up your project correctly, you can simply run your tests from the command-line with the espresso command. You can also use the Android Test Orchestrator to run your tests as a group on multiple devices or emulators simultaneously.

Finally, you can also use cloud testing services such as Firebase Test Lab or AWS Device Farm to run your tests on many different devices. This is a great option if you need to run a large number of tests on different configurations.


Espresso is a great tool for Android developers who need to create reliable and repeatable automated tests. By following the steps outlined in this article, you’ll be able to quickly and easily set up Espresso and start testing your apps. From debugging to running tests, Espresso makes it easy to ensure your apps run as expected.

Also Read:

  1. Step-by-Step Android Studio OpenCV Tutorial for Beginners
Share on:
Vijaygopal Balasa

Vijaygopal Balasa is a blogger with a passion for writing about a variety of topics and Founder/CEO of Androidstrike. In addition to blogging, he is also a Full-stack blockchain engineer by profession and a tech enthusiast. He has a strong interest in new technologies and is always looking for ways to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the field.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.