disclaimer : this is just only based on my opinion and experience, not from research.

You have to set the calabash it’s self, then the xcode if you want to run testing on iOS. If you’re using appium you just need to set the appium it’s self, we don’t need to know the source code etc. Please see how to set up calabash here.

Because we have to setup the xcode project, “duplicating your production target in Xcode”, we have to interfere the developer, usually qa doesn’t have production code access, so it will become complicated. It will be better if we can work on separate way. Using Appium we just need their build result (.app or .ipa or .apk file), just using the build file, we can create the automation test.

We have to define scenario.
We have to define the test which will be save as .feature. Cucumber executes your .feature files, and those files contain executable specifications written in a language called Gherkin. Read more about this.
Basically we have own test scenario which written e.g. on TestRail, in this condition we have to write it again, it’s twice.

Calabash only support Ruby, because I know java, so no more reason.

I’m familiar with java, so I prefer using programming language like Java better than to write scenario. I prefer using “if (a == true) { doSomething();}” better than “Given I am about to login” “Then I am able to create an account”

to be continued…

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