Differentiation from related testing methods
The in-circuit test must be distinguished from the following, related tests:
In-circuit test vs flying-probe test (ICT vs FPT)
The flying probe test (FPT) is also a purely electrical, function-independent test (and therefore an alternative to the ICT). The main difference is the way DUTs are contacted: Instead of a test adapter tailored to the DUT, a universal contacting system with few freely movable (“flying”) test needles is used. While ICT adapters contact many test points at the same time and tests can be performed in parallel, the FPT tester contacts test points and carries out tests in sequence.
In-circuit test vs functional test (ICT vs FCT)
In contrast to ICT and FPT, more complex tests are carried out evaluating the DUTs functionality according to a pre-defined specification. For example, digital signals can be sent to the DUT, or the sensors of the DUT can be interacted with. The testing system then analyses the reaction of the DUT. Functional testing is usually conducted in addition to ICT or FPT.