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Playwright vs Selenium: A Comprehensive Comparison in Automated Testing

June 14, 2023
Playwright vs Selenium


When it comes to automated testing, Playwright and Selenium have emerged as leading frameworks with their own unique offerings. In this blog post, we will explore the features, functionalities, and performance of Playwright and Selenium, accompanied by real-world examples. By comparing these frameworks side by side and presenting the analysis in a comprehensive manner, you will gain valuable insights to make an informed decision when selecting the right framework for your testing needs.

Introduction to Playwright and Selenium


Developed by Microsoft, Playwright is a robust and feature-rich automation testing framework. It offers support for a wide range of programming languages such as JavaScript, TypeScript, Python, and more. With Playwright, testers can enjoy the convenience of cross-browser compatibility, allowing them to write tests that seamlessly run on popular browsers like Chrome, Firefox, and WebKit. 

The framework also provides advanced automation capabilities including parallel execution, headless mode, and powerful debugging features, making it a valuable tool for efficient and effective test automation. Official website: Playwright


Selenium is a widely adopted open-source testing framework. It provides a suite of tools and libraries to automate browser interactions. Selenium WebDriver is the most popular component, allowing testers to write tests in various programming languages such as Java, Python, C#, and more. Selenium supports multiple browsers, making it a versatile choice for web application testing. Official website: Selenium

Recommended Read: selenium python tutorial

Comparison of Features

Cross-Browser Support

As a result of Playwright’s built-in cross-browser support, testers may easily perform tests on Chrome, Firefox, and WebKit without the need for any additional settings. Selenium also supports a variety of browsers, however additional driver installations could be necessary. Major browser compatibility is ensured by both frameworks.

Language Support

Multiple programming languages are supported by Playwright out of the box, which is helpful for teams with a variety of skill sets. Even while Selenium supports multiple languages, not all of them will have the same libraries and bindings. There is substantial language support in both frameworks.


Playwright’s strong architecture and effective implementation have helped it become known for its exceptional performance. Compared to Selenium, it offers quicker test execution times and better stability. Playwright’s excellent performance is aided by its effective event-driven design..

Debugging Capabilities

Playwright excels in offering comprehensive debugging capabilities, allowing testers to take screenshots, record videos, and generate trace logs while executing tests. On the other hand, Selenium also provides debugging features, although it may require additional plugins or libraries for advanced debugging functionalities. 

Both frameworks empower testers with effective debugging options, ensuring streamlined troubleshooting of test scripts. Furthermore, Selenium benefits from its extensive community support, making it easier to seek assistance and access a wealth of debugging resources.

CI/CD Integration

Playwright has built-in integration with well-known CI/CD platforms including Travis CI, Azure DevOps, and Jenkins. With the help of this integration, testers may add automated tests to their CI/CD pipelines, facilitating continuous testing and accelerating feedback loops.

Selenium also provides strong CI/CD platform integration capabilities. It offers add-ons and extensions for well-known programs like Jenkins, TeamCity, and Bamboo, allowing test automation to be seamlessly integrated into the CI/CD pipeline.


Test Management Tool Integration

Integration with well-known test management solutions like TestRail, Zephyr, and qTest is supported by Playwright. With the help of this integration, testers may manage test cases, monitor test execution, and produce thorough test reports all from within their favorite test management tool.

Similar to Selenium, test management tools can be integrated. Testers can streamline test management and reporting procedures by integrating Selenium test results and execution data into applications like JIRA, TestRail, or QTest by utilizing plugins or APIs.

The productivity and traceability of automated testing are improved by the ability to seamlessly interface with CI/CD pipelines and test management systems, resulting in improved cooperation and simpler processes for development and QA teams.

Real-World Examples 

To illustrate the capabilities of Playwright and Selenium, let’s consider two common testing scenarios:

Form Submission: 

With Playwright, you can easily automate form submission by accessing form elements, filling in the required fields, and submitting the form. Playwright’s intuitive syntax allows for concise and readable test scripts.


const { chromium } = require(‘playwright’);
async function submitForm() {
  const browser = await chromium.launch();
  const page = await browser.newPage();
  await page.goto(‘’);
  await page.fill(‘#name’, ‘John Doe’);
  await browser.close();

Let’s try to perform the same steps with Selenium for doing a comparison of steps.


import org.openqa.selenium.WebDriver;
public class SubmitForm {
public static void main(String[] args) { 
// Set the path to the chromedriver executable System.setProperty(“”, “path/to/chromedriver”);

  // Create an instance of ChromeDriver
    WebDriver driver = new ChromeDriver();

    // Navigate to the website

    // Fill in the form field
    driver.findElement(By.cssSelector(“#name”)).sendKeys(“John Doe”);

    // Click the submit button

    // Close the browser

Community Support and User Base 

In the testing community, Playwright has made great progress and is becoming more and more well-liked. Because of Microsoft’s strong support, it will continue to develop and receive upgrades. Playwright has a robust community that actively supports its progress despite having a smaller user base than Selenium.

Being a well-known framework, Selenium benefits from a huge and powerful community support network. It has a large user base and has been widely used by testers all around the world. The vast community makes sure that there are plenty of tools, tutorials, forums, and plugins available to help Selenium users.

Installation Process 

The simplicity and setup requirements of the Playwright and Selenium installation processes are different. The general installation procedures for each framework are listed below, along with relevant official links:

Playwright Installation

  1. Choose your programming language: Playwright supports multiple programming languages, including JavaScript, Python, and .NET. Select the language that best suits your needs.
  2. Install the Playwright library: Using your preferred package manager, install the Playwright library by executing the appropriate command in your terminal or command prompt. For example, to install Playwright for JavaScript, you can use npm (Node Package Manager) with the command: npm install playwright.
  3. Set up the browser binaries: Playwright automatically downloads the browser binaries (Chrome, Firefox, and WebKit) required for automation. However, if you prefer to use specific versions or have limited internet access, you can manually install the binaries. Official Playwright installation guide: Playwright Installation.

Selenium Installation

  1. Choose your programming language: Selenium supports various programming languages, including Java, Python, C#, and more. Select the language you are comfortable with.
  2. Download the Selenium WebDriver: Visit the official Selenium website and download the WebDriver corresponding to your chosen browser. For example, to automate Chrome, you can download the ChromeDriver. Official Selenium downloads page: Selenium Downloads.
  3. Configure system variables: Set up the system variables to include the location of the WebDriver executable file in your environment’s PATH variable.
  4. Install language-specific bindings: Depending on your programming language, install the language-specific Selenium bindings or libraries required for integration with your codebase. This step may involve using package managers like pip, Maven, or NuGet. Official Selenium documentation: Selenium Documentation.

While both frameworks require some initial setup, Playwright’s installation process is generally considered more streamlined and beginner-friendly compared to Selenium.


In summary, both Playwright and Selenium bring exciting features to the table for web application testing. Playwright shines with its modern approach, offering efficiency, high performance, and cross-browser support. Its versatility in supporting multiple programming languages and enhanced debugging capabilities make it an appealing choice. 

On the other hand, Selenium boasts a long-standing reputation and a large user community, providing a wealth of support and resources. It offers stability and familiarity, making it a reliable option for those who value established frameworks. 

When deciding between Playwright and Selenium, it’s crucial to consider factors such as cross-browser compatibility, language support, performance, debugging features, and community support. By carefully evaluating your project requirements and priorities, you can make an informed decision that ensures successful automated testing and the delivery of exceptional web applications. So, embrace the excitement of automation testing and choose the framework that best aligns with your specific needs!

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