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PASS Group, a leading provider of crowdsourced software testing services based in Europe, announced today that it is expanding its crowdtesting platform, passbrains, into the U.S. market in response to increased demand.
PASS Group launched in Europe in 2011 and grew quickly, according to a release from the company, and my own conversations with executives there over the past year. The latest count puts passbrains' army at over 20,000 users and 2,000 software testers in more than 60 countries.
The move to expand into the United States market isn't totally surprising, given that eBay's Europe division is among the major enterprises that have been using passbrains for software quality assurance and engineering.
“Managed crowdtesting is an excellent tool to further extend our quality assurance strategy by adding test resources with the most heterogeneous skill profiles, professional backgrounds, and cultural user behavior,” said Michael Palotas, head of Quality Engineering Europe at eBay. “Crowdtesters think and work in different ways than internal testers; this is why crowdtesting can still find bugs which haven’t been detected through traditional software testing methods.”
PASS Group CEO Dieter Speidel said the benefits of its platform include reduced testing costs and time to market, in addition to improved product quality:
“...we achieve this through massive scaling of the number of external testers assigned during product development to test applications under real-world conditions.”
The revenue growth of crowdsourcing service providers, which includes crowdtesting, has been staggering, jumping 75 percent in 2011, according to a report by crowdsourcing.org's sister organization, massolution, a leading crowdsourcing and crowdfunding advisory firm.
Carl Esposti, CEO and Founder of massolution and Crowdsourcing.org confirmed that the research shows that “large and small companies alike are doing everything they can to maximize the end-customer experience, which today is as likely to occur at the end of an application versus a phone call or in-person. Crowdtesting provides the answer for those enterprises looking to lead or that are struggling to keep up."
A November white paper, “Testing Applications for the Real World,” by massolution, which was sponsored by PASS Group, outlines the impact of crowdtesting and notes that companies are realizing savings of up to 50 percent over previous software development processes.
"Testing is expensive and takes time and resources," the white paper quotes Vladimir Vlasic, Software Testing Manager at Mobiliar, a leading Swiss pensions and insurance provider. "Crowdtesting certain apps is not only more cost effective, but does things that companies cannot reproduce in a lab environment, which helps find more bugs as well as issues that no one even thinks about internally."
“The data in our white paper confirms that as more testers are added to a project, the number of uncovered defects increases substantially. Identifying more problems in the testing phase with crowdtesting can have a hugely positive impact on a company’s reputation and provide significant cost savings and damage avoidance by early detection of critical issues,” added Speidel.
PASS and passbrains won't be the first to offer crowdtesting in the U.S. market. Massachussets-based uTest, for one, has already been around for a few years now. But PASS' Speidel says the company is eager to build on its accomplishments in Europe.
“Developers desperately need to test software under real-world conditions in order to work out bugs and defects in a matter of days or weeks, not months, especially where different languages, browsers and platforms are all variables in software and app localization. Our successes in Europe and the projected growth of the U.S. software testing market enable us to hit the ground running.”
In addition to testing, passbrains is expanding its offerings to include a suite of real-time Testing Workforce Management solutions to large enterprises including recruiting, crowd consulting and knowledge networking.
passbrains also says it allows customers direct access to its technology and methodologies as more enterprises are seeking solutions to integrate public and private crowdtesting approaches.
- Eric Mack is Managing Editor for Crowdsourcing.org. He has covered business, technology and politics for more than a decade for major outlets including CNET, CBS, AOL, NPR, Wired, and the New York Times. You can contact him at email@example.com. Find him on Twitter and Google+. Also be sure to follow Crowdsourcing.org on Twitter and join our Crowdsourcing community on Google+.
Disclosure: passbrains is a client of crowdsourcing.org / massolution.