Betaware is a program or application that is still in the development and testing phase of software development, one of the stages that occurs before final release. Betaware is a pre-release software or application given to a selected group of users so that they can try it under real conditions before the formal release to the public. These beta versions have undergone alpha testing and almost look like the final product, yet as the testing progresses and bugs are found, changes are made. This helps to make the final release version bug-free.
A betaware program may also be called a beta version.
Betaware will usually have more bugs in it than the completed version especially with regards to its performance and feature set. The purpose of beta testing is to reduce the negative impact of any bugs on final users. Beta releases can be categorized into open beta and closed beta. Open beta makes use of a group of people who are interested in participating in the beta test while closed beta is comprised of a selected or restricted group of users who are chosen per invite. These beta testers recommend additional features that they think should be included in the final version and also report any bugs they find in the betaware.