Why Raw Selenium Syntax is Better than Cypress and Playwright? Part 1: WebDriver is a W3C Standard and its Success is well Established

Selenium WebDriver is the best web test automation framework, with good reasons. I list some undisputable facts to support that.

Zhimin Zhan
10 min readJun 23, 2023

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Update 2023–06–29: Part 2: The Audience Matters is available.
Update 2023–07–05:
Part 3: Selenium is Accurate, Intuitive, Consistent, and Geniously Designed is available.

Cypress and Playwright testers won’t like the article's title. Let me firstly crush these people’s thoughts first with a simple fact:

Raw Selenium WebDriver syntax is defined by W3C experts after many rounds of refinement; Cypress or others are created by some individuals with a certain level of commercial interests.

Some would disagree with my article title (this fact, i.e., commercial interests, does not necessarily mean good or bad), I know, but accept this fact first. This article will show more facts, please be open-minded. Some of you might have read my other two specific comparison articles:

Here, I will share views from higher perspectives that people are usually unaware of (but might sound well-organized), such as:

  • a long history of failures in JS test automation frameworks
  • locked in the JavaScript world, there is a much better scripting language for test automation. (such as Ruby, suggested by the classic Agile Testing book)
  • the real success stories of using Selenium WebDriver
  • the shorter test statement syntax does not really make test scripts better, the DSL layer is.
  • not knowing WebDriver is a W3C standard, the W3C process

I will explain the benefit of WebDriver syntax (over Cypress and Playwright) and why this syntax is good in real successful test…

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Zhimin Zhan

Test automation & CT coach, author, speaker and award-winning software developer. Help teams succeed with Agile/DevOps by implementing real Continuous Testing.