Recent studies show that the gaming industry is expected to grow 12% per year from 2020-2025, with North America being the fastest growing market. This is driven by the rise of new gaming and technology platforms, readily available and cheap internet access across the globe, and the advent of new technology like augmented reality.
McAfee, the market leader in antivirus software, wanted to develop a new product focused on the unique security needs of gamers. Gamers have very different technology needs in comparison to other consumer groups. Their gaming systems are often complex, and include cutting edge hardware, memory, graphics cards, and processors to give them a leg up during gaming. Gamers demand high performance, and “high performance” is not typically a phrase used to describe antivirus software, known traditionally as being bulky and slow.
“We were in the need of a unique audience to satisfy the needs of the gamer security product, and BetaTesting did a great job in finding the right cohorts at the intended scale,” said Rajeshwar Sharma, Quality Leader at McAfee.
McAfee set out to develop an antivirus product that could provide maximum protection without affecting gameplay for this market. The McAfee team worked with BetaTesting to design a multi-month beta test before the Gamer Security product launched, for the purpose of collecting user experience feedback and functional/exploratory bug testing over multiple test cycles.
First, BetaTesting recruited over 400 PC gamers matching specific demographic and interest criteria required by McAfee: A unique mix of real-world operating systems, devices, and locations. Participants were recruited through the existing BetaTesting community of 250,000 testers and supplemented with custom recruiting through BetaTesting market research partner networks.
McAfee’s product team and user research teams worked closely with BetaTesting to design multiple test flows and collect feedback from hundreds of gamers. The test included feedback around the installation process, the user interface, and the back-end telemetry data of the antivirus product being used in the real-world.
Testers also provided information about which games they played, their hardware configurations, operating systems, and more, in order to connect all of that data to the performance of the Gamer Security product.
During the final rounds of testing, McAfee also provided marketing materials and screenshots to testers to get feedback about their messaging and content to see what resonated best with their target market.
The research team also set up moderated interviews with testers who had provided the most insightful feedback. Testers connected via video chat with the McAfee team to discuss their in-depth opinions about the product, their willingness to pay, and much more.
Overall, the test helped McAfee understand the value of the product to their target market. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive about how the antivirus software didn’t affect gameplay, and testers loved the simple installation, straightforward UI and performance data. The McAfee team was able to launch the product on time – with good reviews online.
“BetaTesting is an amazing team, who were very helpful, diligent and thorough from immediately understanding the requirements of our unique software to contract negotiations, and to overall execution of the program to the scale of our expectations. They were available, prompt and clear in all communications. I would highly recommend them!” – Rajeshwar Sharma, Quality Leader at McAfee.
McAfee received over 200 bug reports during the test, detailing issues related to installation and update issues, crashes, performance issues during certain games, data mismatches, and more. Each bug report included the device and operating system of the tester, and many had photos and videos to make it easy to understand the issue and let McAfee’s development team address them quickly.
The McAfee Gamer Security test was a comprehensive test that underscores the capabilities of BetaTesting platform and managed services. The BetaTesting team coordinated with different departments and stakeholders within the McAfee team, and the test design focused on everything from onboarding to back-end data collection to marketing content. Finally, testers provided hundreds of bug reports, qualitative and quantitative data, and moderated interview feedback to make this test – and the new product launch – a success for McAfee.
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