Pick a niche and strive to be the best in that segment. That segment, for Agitar, is unit testing for Java. This company’s innovations continue to lead the industry.

With a test manager, build system, performance profiler and bug tracker, the company delivers on its name—to automate the process of quality assurance.

It continues to tickle developers’ bug-tracking sweet spot with clever, innovative user interfaces and the choice to run standalone or in a full-feature hosted environment, or to integrate tightly with Visual Studio.

Innovative tools? High-value customer base? Respected technology? Strong financial performance? Any two might be enough to make a small company an attractive acquisition target. Identify Software had all four.

With perhaps the most diverse set of test tools offered, Compuware continues to excel equally in all areas, including unit, functional, load, performance and risk-based testing, and in requirements and even test-data management.

If there’s a way to simplify Web application testing, chances are Empirix has thought of it. Its point-and-shoot functional, regression and performance test and monitoring tools lead the way.

Mercury’s test tools have been the industry standard for more than a decade. HP is now keeper of that public trust. Time will tell if it is up to the task.

In the SOA-test arena, iTKO was out front with the concept of testing for business continuity. The company continues to push the limits of availability with its complete collaboration solution.

Flagship SOAPscope helped set the standard for Web services testing before most people even knew the meaning of the term.

Focused on preventing defects before they occur, Parasoft offers a broad array of tools for multiple languages that are well suited to testing teams large and small.

Gives new meaning to the term Òintuitive interfaceÓ with its line of Web-based tools for collaborative project, defect and software life-cycle management and its low-cost subscription model that fits any budget.

A list of leading test-tools companies would not be complete without Telelogic, which continues to raise the bar on tools for all phases of development, particularly in requirements management and test automation.

Continue to next category: Tools & Environments 2007