The most valuable feature would have to be the cross-browser testing functionality. Our product specifications say that we support the Big Four browsers – Chrome, Firefox, IE, Safari – latest versions and up to two versions back. When including mobile, that’s 10 different browsers (and browser drivers) to maintain. This would be a near impossible task for our small testing team.
It also gives us the ability to replay our tests back in video form. This makes attempting to debug failed tests not a breeze, but easier. It also helps convincing (stubborn) developers that there is a problem.
Improvements to My Organization
We have been able to successfully integrate Sauce Labs into our automated test environment. From that we are able to run our test suite across multiple browsers overnight. This gives us a level of confidence that we previously didn’t have.
The other huge benefit we get from this product is the manual testing powers. When a client tells us that they’re having issues on a particular browser. We’re able to fire up that exact version and reproduce the problem ourselves.
Room for Improvement
Speed is the key. We’re a business in Australia, so any tests that we perform are having to travel to America and back. This is time that we have to wait on for us to get responses back. In an active business every second counts.
Use of Solution
We've been using it for about 12 months.
We've had no issues with deployment.
We've had no issues with instability.
We haven’t had any problems that we couldn’t work around, or there wasn’t any documentation on. The only problem is that hit that point where it’s unfeasible to expand our UI testing framework as the cost to run a shed load of tests is too much for our business.
Customer Service and Technical Support
This has been an area of focus from Sauce Labs. Their customer service is unmatched, and their help documents have all been recently updated.
We have used a local Selenium grid, and still do to write our tests. However, we valued the cross-browser accessibility over speed for our nightly automated test suite.
Initial setup was somewhat difficult originally. That was due to multiple reasons, namely lack of actual programming experience on our behalf, and the documentation at the time was a mountain to climb. Sauce Labs has since updated this documentation, and we have since gained experience.
Our in-house team performed the implementation. For advice, it’s a lot like setting up Selenium Grid. One thing we did was have an Environmental Variable “ISTESTLOCAL”, we use this as a gate to whether or not our tests should run on Sauce Labs or not. This is very helpful in increasing the speed which we can write and debug our own tests.
Also, if using the Bamboo plugin, make sure to check the settings page as there is a list of already in use environmental variables set when Sauce Labs runs.
The biggest things you have to consider is how much testing you’re planning on doing, who is your client base, and what browsers they’re using, and what can’t be tested using API testing.
If you have any issues with the product just shoot the support team an email. They always get back to me promptly with the best solution they have available. Also, spend the time to read the documentation.
If your company is security conscious, as it should be, look into Sauce Connect which creates a secure tunnel between Sauce Labs and yourself.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.