End user

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"End-user" redirects here. For other uses, see End-user (disambiguation).

In product development, an end user (sometimes end-user)[a] is a person who ultimately uses or is intended to ultimately use a product.[1][2][3] The end user stands in contrast to users who support or maintain the product[4], such as sysops, system administrators, database administrators,[5], or technicians. End users typically do not possess the technical understanding or skill of the product designers,[6] a fact that it is easy for designers to forget or overlook, leading to features with which the customer is dissatisfied.[2] In information technology, end users are not customers in the usual sense--they are typically employees of the customer.[7]

Certain American defense-related products and information require export approval from the United States Government under the ITAR and EAR.[8] In order to obtain a license to export, the exporter must specify both the end user and end use using an end-user certificate.[9]

In End-User License Agreements (EULAs), the end user is distinguished from the value-added reseller that installs the software or the organization that purchases and manages the software.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ When used as an adjective, "end-user" is generally hyphenated; when used as a noun, "end user" is left unhyphenated. Thus, "good end-user experience" versus "good experience to the end user".


  1. ^ Dictionary of Computer and Internet Terms. Barron's Business Guides (8 ed.). Hauppauge, New York: Barron's Educational Series. 2003. p. 171. ISBN 0764121669. OCLC 50480181. the person ultimately intended to use a product 
  2. ^ a b Howe, Denis (1997-03-29). "FOLDOC entry for "end-user"". http://foldoc.org. London. Retrieved 2015-06-28. The person who uses a computer application, as opposed to those who developed or support it. 
  3. ^ Legal Information Institute. "U.S. Code § 8541 - Definitions". http://www.law.cornell.edu. U.S. Code. Ithaca, New York: Cornell Law School. Retrieved 2015-06-28. The term “end-user”, with respect to a good, service, or technology, means the person that receives and ultimately uses the good, service, or technology. 
  4. ^ FIPS Task Group on Database Management System Standards (1979). Recommendations for Database Management System Standards. Washington, D.C.: National Bureau of Standards. p. 58. OCLC 6862471. The end users are persons who perform the application functions. End users include parametric users and generalized function users, but they are not system support personnel. 
  5. ^ Shepherd, John C. (1990). Database Management: Theory and Application. Homewood, Illinois: Irwin Professional Publishing. p. 20. ISBN 0256078297. OCLC 20491157. 
  6. ^ O'Neil, Patrick (1994). Database Principles Programming Performance. San Francisco: Morgan Kaufmann Publishers. pp. 4–5. ISBN 1558602194. OCLC 30777731. One of the most important features of a DBMS is that relatively inexperienced users, called end users, are empowered to retrieve information from the database. The user poses a query at the terminal keyboard, requesting the database system to display the answer on a terminal screen or on a printed sheet. 
  7. ^ Chrissis, Mary Beth; Konrad, Mike; Shrum, Sandy (2011). CMMI for Development: Guidelines for Process Integration and Product Improvement. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Addison-Wesley. p. 581. ISBN 9780321711502. OCLC 884168009. A party that ultimately uses a delivered product or that receives the benefit of a delivered service. (See also "customer".) End users may or may not also be customers (who can establish and accept agreements or authorize payments). 
  8. ^ "DEFENSE TRADE CONTROLS OVERVIEW" (PDF). http://www.state.gov. Washington, D.C.: United States Department of State. Retrieved 2015-06-28. 
  9. ^ "NONTRANSFER AND USE CERTIFICATE" (PDF). http://www.state.gov. Washington, D.C.: United States Department of State. Retrieved 2015-06-28. 
  10. ^ "What is END USER?". http://thelawdictionary.org. Black's Law Dictionary. Retrieved 2015-06-28.