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What are the differences between Alpha Testing and Beta Testing?

Alpha testing is a type of acceptance testing, which is performed to identify all possible bugs/issues before releasing the product to the end-user. Alpha test is a preliminary software field test carried out by a team of users to find out the bugs that were not found previously by other tests. Alpha testing is to simulate a real user environment by carrying out tasks and operations that actual user might perform. Alpha testing implies a meeting with a software vendor and client to ensure that the developers appropriately meet the client's requirements in terms of the performance, functionality, and durability of the software.

Alpha testing needs lab environment, and usually, the testers are an internal employee of the organization. This testing is called alpha because it is done early on, near the end of the software development, but before beta testing.

Beta Testing is a type of acceptance testing; it is the final test before shipping a product to the customers. Beta testing of a product is implemented by "real users "of the software application in a "real environment." In this phase of testing, the software is released to a limited number of end-users of the product to obtain feedback on the product quality. It allows the real customers an opportunity to provide inputs into the design, functionality, and usability of the product. These inputs are essential for the success of the product. Beta testing reduces product failure risks and increases the quality of the product through customer validation. Direct feedback from customers is a significant advantage of beta testing. This testing helps to tests the software in a real environment. The experiences of the previous users are forwarded back to the developers who make final changes before releasing the software product.

Differences between the Alpha testing and Beta testing are:

Sr. No. Alpha Testing Beta Testing
1. Alpha testing performed by a team of highly skilled testers who are usually the internal employee of the organization. Beta testing performed by clients or end-users in a real-time environment, who is not an employee of the organization.
2. Alpha testing performed at the developer's site; it always needs a testing environment or lab environment. Beta testing doesn't need any lab environment or the testing environment; it is performed at a client's location or end-user of the product.
3. Reliability or security testing not performed in-depth in alpha testing. Reliability, security, and robustness checked during beta testing.
4. Alpha testing involves both white box and black-box techniques. Beta testing uses only black-box testing.
5. Long execution cycles maybe require for alpha testing. Only a few weeks are required for the execution of beta testing.
6. Critical issues or fixes can be identified by developers immediately in alpha testing. Most of the issues or feedback is collecting from the beta testing will be implemented for the future versions of the product.
7. Alpha testing performed before the launch of the product into the market. At the time of software product marketing.
8. Alpha testing focuses on the product's quality before going to beta testing. Beta testing concentrates on the quality of the product, but gathers users input on the product and ensures that the product is ready for real-time users.
9. Alpha testing performed nearly the end of the software development. Beta testing is a final test before shipping a product to the customers.
10. Alpha testing is conducting in the presence of developers and the absence of end-users. Beta testing reversed of alpha testing.

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