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Selenium is a popular open-source test automation tool that has been in the software industry for nearly 2 decades. It has been the go-to tool for testers when it comes to web automation. Even we have been using Selenium to deliver exceptional automation testing services to our clients all these years. But we are always focused on using the best tools, and so when Cypress started to gain a lot of popularity in recent years, we keenly looked into it and now have a clear understanding of both these tools. So in this blog, we will be pitting Cypress vs Selenium to help you choose the right tool for your needs with our analysis.
By now almost everyone in software testing would be aware of Selenium. But if in case you are new, you might need an introduction. Selenium is an open-source automation testing framework for web applications that was initially released in 2004. Selenium 4 is the most recent and stable version of Selenium.
Cypress vs Selenium: Points that Matter
No single tool can cater to the wide range of needs of different people. That is why it is important to opt for the tool that is the most suitable for your particular needs. In addition to that, choosing the right automation framework plays an integral part in your automation testing’s success. So before we head to the Cypress vs Selenium comparison table, let’s first learn what are the main aspects to look into when choosing between Cypress and Selenium or any other automation tool for that matter.
- Language support
- Cross-Browser Testing
- In-Built Features
- Ease of Use
- Community & Support
The first and foremost factor is the type of automation tests you are looking to execute or in need of for your project. When it comes to Cypress vs Selenium, they do support a wide range of tests. Cypress in specific supports API testing, whereas Selenium doesn’t support it. Cypress is also great for unit testing as developers are more comfortable with it when compared to Selenium. Both options are equally good when it comes to performing end-to-end testing.
Apart from the testing capabilities of the tool, another pivotal aspect to consider is the programming languages it supports. Though it is preferable to pick one that supports multiple languages, make sure the language you want to use is supported. You should consider the programming language used in the project in general and also your available talent pool when making this decision. When it comes to Cypress vs Selenium, Selenium supports more number of languages in comparison.
Being web-based automation testing tools, testing across different browsers would be a crucial part. As of writing this blog, Cypress doesn’t support automating tests on Safari and Internet Explorer. Though IE has been discontinued, you might be in a position to test a legacy application that depends on IE. So Selenium would be the way to go if cross-browser testing is a priority.
Apart from execution speed, the number of tests that can be in parallel is also a crucial factor when comparing Cypress vs Selenium. Selenium with the help of Selenium Grid is the clear winner here as it eases cross-browser testing across platforms. Whereas Cypress doesn’t provide the option of running more than one browser at a time.
- User-friendly features such as the automatic scrolling option that ensures an object or element is in the viewport before actions such as clicks are executed.
- There is also no need for the tester to use explicit/implicit wait commands like in Selenium.
- There are also options to control the behavior of server responses, timers, and functions using stubs, clocks, and spies.
- The Test Runner in Cypress makes it possible for testers to go through every step before and after screenshots making it easy to debug.
- Cypress is also packed with reliable and ready-to-use frameworks. Whereas you’ll have to build everything from scratch when it comes to Selenium.
- Flaky tests are also reduced thanks to the retry capability of actions performed over elements.
Ease of Use
So when pitting Cypress vs Selenium, the previous points we saw were the major dealbreakers. If you have what you are looking for in both these options, then you can consider how easy or usable the tool is for your usage. As discussed earlier, developers would lean towards Cypress as it is great for Unit testing. It also has a relatively easier installation & setup process.
Community & Support
Selenium has been around for a long time and so it naturally has an edge when it comes to community support with code samples, and so on. But Cypress also has a rapidly growing community and really effective documentation.
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Cypress vs Selenium: Key Highlights
|Testing||Supports End-to-End and API Testing||Supports End-to-End testing, but not API Testing.|
|Users||It is developer-friendly since developers were considered throughout its development. It is also used by Testers.||Predominantly used by Testers.|
|Browsers compatibility||Firefox and all chromium-based browsers (Chrome, Edge, Brave).||Chrome, Opera, Firefox, Edge, Internet Explorer, Safari, and other major browsers.|
|Performance||It is quicker since it has a distinct architecture that does not use||Its architecture makes it difficult to write simple, quick tests. The platform, on the other hand, is fast, and you can run many tests at scale, in parallel, and across browsers.|
|Installation setup||Run the following command: npm install -save-dev Cypress||The installation process is more complicated and time-consuming.|
|Plugins||Though it has fewer integrations, it does support a large number of plugins.||It integrates well with CI/CD, visual testing, cloud, and reporting tools.|
|Reference Documentation||It is a growing community and provides good samples and documentation.||It has a wide online community and excellent code and samples.|
|Parallel Testing||Yes (Limited)||Yes|
|Mobile Testing||No||Yes (But only with Appium)|
Why Choose Selenium?
- Cross-browser testing is a strong suit of Selenium, and if that is a priority; opt for Selenium.
- Automation scripts can be run in parallel or simultaneously by Selenium.
- Selenium is useful in DevOps and continuous integration because it can be easily integrated with Jenkins, Maven, and other tools.
- Selenium makes it possible to perform headless browser testing.
- Selenium has a record and play [IDE] that simplifies the automation testing process. There is even an option to export this recording script in your preferred language.
Why Choose Cypress?
- If you need to perform API testing, Cypress is the only choice.
- Cypress would be better for developers as it is great for performing Unit testing.
- Cypress is generally considered to be more reliable and fast as it works on real browsers, unlike other tools which simulate the browsers.
- Cypress’s in-built reporting is better than Selenium. But you can overcome this issue by integrating Selenium with TestNG or Cucumber.
We hope our Cypress vs Selenium blog has laid out all the important points you’ll need to consider when choosing between these tools. As we saw in our blog, both these tools are great in their own ways. So make sure to pick the tool that fits your needs. Being an experienced automation testing service provider, we choose the tool for our project on the same basis. Make sure to subscribe to our newsletter as we will be publishing more insightful content on a regular basis.