What is prototyping? With in-depth explanation and 7 best courses!!
Prototyping is a relatively new concept for many people out there but this is an important step in product design and development.
“What is Prototyping?” is the question that we are going to discuss in this article and we would also take an overview on aspects related to prototyping.
So, hold on with me till the end and enjoy the article.
Table of Contents:
- What is prototyping?
- What does prototype exactly mean.
- Qualities of prototypes.
- Why Prototyping is important?
- Types of prototyping.
- Prototyping Tools
- Why do we need prototyping?
- Courses to learn prototyping.
- Books to learn prototyping.
What is Prototyping?
Prototyping is a process or a procedure where designing ideas are implemented on the paper or digital devices with some specific tools. Prototyping is a brainstorming process where various designs and layouts of the product are developed, from which each design is tested and checked under different circumstances and then the combination of all the designs is developed as the final prototype of the product.
Prototyping is means developing short and rough format of the product before the final product is being developed.
Prototyping is the process that just comes after the step of design thinking (https://studyber.com/what-is-design-thinking/) in product development.
According to Wikipedia prototyping is:
A prototype is an early sample, model, or release of a product built to test a concept or process. It is a term used in a variety of contexts, including semantics, design, electronics, and software programming.
What does prototyping exactly mean?
Prototyping is a simple term but many developers and designers are not completely aware about it.
They often are confused between mockups and prototypes. So, prototype in simple and easy words means: “A simulation or design of a final product which is used for testing. Also, to get a complete overview of the final product that will be develop. The entire goal of prototyping is presenting a copy of the final product in front of the clients and the stakeholders.
Prototyping is usually developed for carrying different experiments on the products and then solving those issues before the final product is being developed.
This makes the development phase easier and more efficient of the product.
Qualities of the prototypes
There are many qualities of prototypes we will be discussing the most 3 important one’s:
- Representation: This is the main quality of the prototype that the designers can present the models of products in front of the clients and the stakeholders before the actual product is being developed. The representation can be many different ways like paper, or digitally by the help of prototyping software’s.
- Precision: Although the prototypes are models of the final product but these are just developed with precision as the products. As the prototypes have to provide complete realistic engagement with the product by the client.
- Interactivity: The whole phenomenon of prototyping is based on interactivity of the product being developed. So the prototypes those are developed are partially functional and made as same as the final product.
Why prototyping is important?
Prototyping is very important because it can be developed very rapidly as compared to the product. Also, many prototypes can be made at the same time and various tests can be implemented on them to check various factors related to it.
Making changes that the client requires can be done easily on the prototype.
Prototyping is important because of following reasons:
- It can act as a skeleton and reference point of the project or the product.
- It can server as documentation to the product being developed.
- It can save a lot of time and energy.
- Making changes on a prototype can be way easier than on the product itself.
- Prototypes can be accessed by anyone before the final product is launched.
Types of Prototyping
1. Wireframe: Wire framing is a new concept in prototyping. Wireframe is a digital type of layout of the product. This is a common prototyping technique used by web and app designers to make a model of the website and apps. It is often used by the front end developers as a reference document.
2. Sketches and Diagrams: Sketches and Diagrams can be called as one of the initial techniques of prototyping. It is developed on the paper for simple and easy product designs. Sketches and Diagrams are basic form of prototyping which are developed using paper and ink.
3. 3D printing: This is one of the most advanced techniques of prototyping. Three-dimensional printing helps the engineers monitor the product in 3D format. This helps the developers conduct the tests easily and conveniently. So, this helps in moving to the engineers from the designing phase to the development phase quickly.
4. Video prototype: Video prototypes are often used when the products are more complicated to develop. This type of prototype is presented in the form of animated video or a simulation so as to understand the end product more exactly. Tests can also be conducted on such animated prototypes with the help of software.
5. Physical prototype: This is one of the traditional types of software where a physical small replica of the product is made. This type of model is just used of designing and testing purposes. It cannot be made functional.
Why do we need prototyping?
Here are some of the reasons that would help you understand that why do we need prototyping in product development.
- Present the ideas more clearly and effectively in front of the consumers and clients.
- Reduces the risk.
- Simulate the real product.
- Iterate at a lower cost.
- Quick, easy and efficient to create.
- To make the product more refined and accurate.
Courses to learn prototyping
1. UI/UX design with Adobe XD: Design & Prototype a Mobile App
2. Rapid Prototyping for Entrepreneurs| Build a Demo in 2 hours
3. Adobe XD UI/UX Design, prototype, and handoff from scratch
5. Prototyping and Design
6. How to design & prototype a Mobile UI/UX Design Experience using Figma design tool – Learn Figma
7. Designing for the Future: UI/UX Prototyping
Books to learn prototyping:
1. Getting Started with Arduino: The Open Source Electronics Prototyping Platform (Make)
2. Prototyping for Designers: Developing the Best Digital and Physical Products
3. Rapid Prototyping and Engineering Applications: A Toolbox for Prototype Development, Second Edition
4. Prototyping and Modelmaking for Product Design: Second Edition
5. Rapid Prototyping of Digital Systems: SOPC Edition
This was the complete article on prototyping. We discussed many factors of prototypes like qualities, types and importance of prototyping.
Hope you enjoyed the article.