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wikiHow to Become a Beta Tester

Two Parts:Finding and Applying for a PositionTesting Software

Do you have favorite games or computer software that you'd like to use and want to be involved in the development of? It can be fun, you'll have early access to new releases, and you may even get yourself a free copy. Many people want to participate in developing and improving software by becoming a beta tester, but few know how. However, becoming a beta tester and succeeding at it is easier than you'd think.

Part 1
Finding and Applying for a Position

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    Put in some research. While some games have open betas and some other beta testing positions are advertised, most paid beta testing isn't. If you have a particular game or program in mind, try looking for information on the developer's website. Some gaming and software forums may also have valuable information to share with you.
    • If you don't have a specific game or program in mind, you can search for positions.
    • Try searching for "Beta Testing Job", "Crowdsourced Beta Testing", and "Freelance Software Testing". You'll turn up plenty of results.[1]
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    Contact developers. Once you have found the products you are interested in testing, look up who their developer is. If they were looking to bring on beta testers they will probably have an online application. If not, simply send an email. Briefly explain your interest, testing experience and skills in volunteering as a tester. Be succinct and to the point. [2]
    • Developers are busy. Be as brief and concise as possible. It'll look more professional too.[3]
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    Consider volunteering. As is the case in many industries, you can get your start by volunteering. Companies will often look for volunteer testers, and they may bring on those with talent and dedication for a paid position.
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    Keep an eye out for new opportunities. Search for information on blogs, news articles, and game or software teasers that can provide news regarding products that are entering a beta testing phase.
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    Join beta testing groups. You can also join beta testing groups and communities. [4] Sometimes, developers advertise on their message boards or post announcements regarding upcoming betas. If nothing else, you'll be able to communicate and gain experience from other testers.

Part 2
Testing Software

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    Be detailed and accurate. If you are accepted as a beta tester, focus on providing detailed, useful information for the developer. Beta testing might not be as exciting as you anticipated. Odds are that you will be tasked with testing one specific function over and over.
    • There are many specific testing roles. Focus on excelling at yours.
    • If you succeed in a limited role, you may be asked to take on additional new and exciting tasks.
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    Focus on the GUI. One of the most common areas to begin beta testing is by evaluating the General User Interface (GUI) and ensuring that it is straightforward and user friendly. Interactions with the GUI should be easy, quick, and enjoyable [5]
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    Make sure available functions make sense. All available actions on a page should make logical sense, both visually and functionally.[6] Does every tab on a particular page belong? Are similar tabs placed next to each other? There are a lot more factors than you would initially think to consider.
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    Verify that the mechanics function as intended. This is the most common task that people associate with beta testing. Repeat simple actions and make sure that they all run smoothly and as they should.[7]You'll need to discuss with the developer how the mechanics are supposed to function, and use that as the baseline for your observations.
    • While people get excited because they are testing how to run or shoot in a game, more often than not you'll be running into or shooting the same wall repeatedly.
    • Don't get distracted by testing anything outside of the requested parameters.
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    Promote the product. Never trash the product you've been testing. If you don't like the product, keep that to yourself. You've only been testing a pre-production version of the software anyway. You have been trusted to both be objective during testing and act professionally afterwards.
    • Trashing a product can ruin the opportunity to beta test in the future.
    • If you were a skilled beta tester, you contributed to making the product better.
    • If you enjoyed your experience, consider referring suitable friends for future beta testing positions.

Tips

  • Be polite in your email, it will make you seem mature and ready for their job.
  • Insert all "optional" marked information to an online application. It will greatly increase your chances of being selected.
  • Don't try to sound pretentious or geeky. Your sham will be seen through with relative ease.
  • Investigate specialized web sites that do market testing about real users.

Warnings

  • Don't download any programs from disreputable sites. They could be malware.
  • Be sure to abide by any non-disclosure agreement that you may be required to sign in order to become a tester.[8]

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