In the development of any product, it is not a good practice to simply develop the program and release it right away. The product needs to pass a sequence of rigorous tests to make sure that the product matches the requirements of the client and has no serious problems in it.
Why Alpha and Beta Testing?
If a software application will be used by many users then it is impossible for software developer and tester to forecast how the customers actually use a program . Customer may use odd combination of data regularly. Thus most of software product vendors use a process called alpha and beta testing to uncover errors that only the end users may find. Alpha and Beta testing is done by customers (end users) rather than testing professionals.
A] Alpha Testing
- Alpha testing is performed by Customer at the developer’s site.
- Alpha testing is conducted in a controlled environment which means testing is conducted in development environment in the presence of developer, testers and end users.
- The developer guide the users about application and records defects and usage issues while testing. This is also called developer “looking over the shoulder” of user.
B] Beta Testing
- Many times we have heard term “Beta release/version”. It is related to beta testing .
- Beta testing is performed by end users at end user’s site.
- Unlike alpha testing the developers are not present so we can say that beta testing is conducted in uncontrolled environment.
- The users records all issues and problems occurred during use of application and reports these issues to developer regularly.
- The software engineers take care of all issues reported during beta testing and makes necessary modifications and then prepare the product for final release to the entire customer base.