Planned Obsolescence Testing, do we really need to test??

Just some time ago I recovered my old super Nintendo. I connected it to the television, blew some air in the game and inserted the game in the slide. My kids and I started playing directly!
Still working and the games are still fun to play!
Imagine an old Ipad in 10 years? The thing probably won´t even start!


This is planned obsolescence.
Maybe the Nintendo example is not the best example as the games became obsolete. Although most of the games played at the moment on mobiles and (i)pads are still the same as then.

But I want to talk here about software testing and planned obsolescence. A lot of applications we test now are for temporary use. When you are testing they are already planning an improved version or an application that can replace the one you are testing.
As testers we have to make sure we know what the objective of the application is. What is the planned obsolescence time? Based upon that information we can create our testing strategy.

F.e. a new Ipad application is there to last maybe 3-6 months before the new version should make its way.

The application must run well, give the end user what they want. Running the basic functionality the user must be happy and want more. They probably except bugs in corner cases. Thanks to the bugs the user will even be encouraged to look out for the new version.
Our testing strategy must in this case be focused on testing the basic functionality and the performance of this functionality. It should work good, but not too good.
Remember how Google Chrome started, a simple browser but with a nice new functionality not yet available in the other browsers. The first version was full of errors, but the “customers” accepted this as they were focused on the new functionality not on the errors.
Is this planned Obsolescence? I believe so. They could spend more time making a better, more durable version but planned to make it obsolete in little time.
We as testers have to try to get into the minds of the decision makers. What is the planned obsolescence of the software products we have to test?
Some questions come up:
• Do we need to spend time and money on test automation on products with a planned obsolescence date?
• How far should exploratory testing go?
• Can quality standards and certifications like CMMi and ISO be used in the line of planned Obsolescence?
• What is the planned obsolescence date for Testers?

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