ActivTrak’s innovative and iterative software development life cycle includes the following stages:
Note: Some features or enhancements may not travel through the full Beta-GA lifecycle.
- Bug fixes that change only the incorrect behavior of the bug.
- Cosmetic changes, such as changing the label of a field in the administrator UI.
- Changes that are narrow in scope or effect, or are purely additive.
Changes like these may be released at any time and appear in production immediately. As with all changes that affect our customers, changes occurring outside the regular Beta-Deprecation lifecycle are reported in the Release Notes section of the ActivTrak Help Center (also accessible in-app via Latest Updates), the ActivTrak Agent Version change log, and via the ActivTrak Weekly Digest.
During the Beta phase, ActivTrak’s product team may invite a small number of customers to early testing of features. Customers participating in a Beta program agree to provide feedback that is required for maturing the feature and validating that success criteria have been met. However, the timeline for addressing specific areas of feedback (including bugs) is determined by ActivTrak based on overall market requirements for each feature.
Note: ActivTrak only enables Beta features in a select set of environments because features in Beta aren't supported by ActivTrak Support and may change at any time during the Beta phase.
Customers participating in ActivTrak’s Beta Program are ensured regular contact with ActivTrak product team members, which may include conference calls to cover specific use cases, deployment guidance, and feedback. ActivTrak may solicit customers to participate in a Beta via email, in-product messaging, or in research forums.
Early Access (EA)
During Early Access (EA), a feature will be enabled for a mid-to-large number of customers to gain feedback from a wider user audience and/or to test it at scale. Release notes and other documentation is published during this phase. ActivTrak also solicits feedback on Early Access features, typically via in-app chat and surveys as well as by conducting individual user interviews.
Note: Early Access features are warrantied.
General Availability (GA)
A feature in General Availability (GA) is a new or enhanced functionality that is enabled by default for all customers. Features in GA are supported by ActivTrak’s Support team and issues are addressed according to your Customer Support Agreement with ActivTrak. Documentation for features in a GA release is made publicly available in the ActivTrak Help Center.
To improve our technology’s performance and consistently provide the most value and ease of use for our customers, it is sometimes necessary for us to deprecate outdated or underutilized features, functionality, or products. In this section, we will outline our feature deprecation process & policy to ensure the impact on our valued customers and partners is minimal.
Why does ActivTrak deprecate features?
There are several reasons why ActivTrak may decide to deprecate features, functionality, or products. Here are a few of the most common:
- ActivTrak’s technology team continuously improves how our product works, focusing on our customers’ evolving needs and use cases. If a feature or functionality is no longer serving our customers effectively or efficiently, we may choose to deprecate it.
- Over time, certain features may become too complex, making the product hard to use. At the same time, ActivTrak may identify or design a better alternative method that achieves the same result more simply.
- ActivTrak strictly adheres to the highest standards for security and legal compliance. As such, ActivTrak may be required to deprecate features or functionality that do not meet regulatory or compliance standards.
- Third-party operating systems or software that the ActivTrak platform runs on or connects with may implement updates or announce deprecations that prevent certain features, functionality, or products from working optimally, or that make it difficult for ActivTrak’s teams to provide ongoing customer support.
It is important to note that deprecation is a process, and thus, the terminology used within this article and future deprecation documentation and communications are used to indicate specific stages within the deprecation timeline. Here are a few of the most common:
- End of Sale: The last date when a product or add-on is available for sale by ActivTrak.
- End of Support: The last date support services for an ActivTrak feature or product are available. After this date, no new enhancements or bug fixes will be released for this product or feature.
- Deprecation Date: The last date an ActivTrak product, add-on, or feature is accessible to customers or partners.
ActivTrak reserves the right to stop selling a product or add-on at any given point in time without advance notice. ActivTrak will normally provide advance notice for the End of Support and Deprecation milestones. When possible, ActivTrak will offer an alternative product, add-on, or feature. See details below.
Deprecation notice & timelines
In most cases (with emergencies or special circumstances as the exception), we will begin communicating feature or functionality deprecation no later than 90 days prior to its deprecation date. For the deprecation of certain high-impact features, full products, or add-ons, the timeline will be extended to provide additional advanced notice.
Account Administrators (or feature users for certain deprecations) will be notified in advance of any planned feature, functionality, or product deprecations through a variety of channels to ensure the message is received by impacted customers as soon as possible. Communication channels may include but are not limited to, email, in-application notifications, outreach from account representatives, release notes, knowledge base articles, and announcements on our corporate website. Communications will include key information explaining:
- Why we are deprecating the feature, functionality, or product.
- The deprecation timeline.
- Alternative functionality and/or workarounds to minimize the impact on our customers and partners.
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