Pre-released software, also known as beta software, is a program that is still in its testing phase. Software vendors may release a few versions, known as release candidates (RC1, RC2, etc.), to a select group of clients before the official release.
Release candidates are like sneak previews of the final product, but with the added benefit of finding and repairing any significant defects before the software is used by the general public. It’s important to note that pre-released software may have bugs and may not function properly.
There are multiple stages of pre-released software development, including:
- Internal alpha versions
- External beta versions
- Release candidates
- Final release of software
After the release of the final version, numerous updates that include feature additions and bug fixes are typically released.
Why do software vendors release pre-released software?
Software vendors may release pre-released software to test functionality, gather user feedback, and identify defective code before the official release.
Should I use pre-released software?
Pre-released software is not recommended for general use, as it may have bugs and may not function properly. It’s best to wait for the official release.
What is the difference between alpha, beta, and release candidate software?
Alpha software is the first version of a program that is typically tested internally. Beta software is the second version, which is released to a select group of clients for testing. Release candidates are like sneak previews of the final product, but with the added benefit of finding and repairing any significant defects before the software is used by the general public.
Pre-released software can provide companies with valuable insights into how users interact with their product before the official release. However, as a user, it’s best to wait for the official release before using the software to avoid potential issues and bugs.