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8 Important Reasons Why You Need Prototypes


There are several steps in building a product before pushing it for mass production. In each stage, the main goal is to have a product for specific target customers and solve their pain points. To evaluate if this product solves their problems, you need a working model. This model is called a prototype.

In product development, the prototype is the 3D representation of an idea that can be tested for its form and functions. You need to have a tangible model to present to the stakeholders and prospective users to understand if it meets their needs and expectations.

This mockup once approved by the stakeholders will be used to collect feedback leading to consultations, changes, and iterations until you have a clear idea of what you need to build the final product. It is easier to collect feedback and make the necessary changes at the initial stages than when your product is nearly ready. It will save cost and effort, and guide the product in the right direction.

What is Prototype?


3D printing machines

Simply put, a prototype is a sample or mock-up of a product design. It is a quick model that explains the actual plans of the product, including its form and function. With a prototype, the stakeholders and users can feel and use it while demonstrating its functionality. Prototyping not only helps identify and formulate the main direction of the design but can also help shorten the product development process.

Why Prototype is necessary?

There are many benefits to prototyping. Here are the reasons why it is necessary.

1. A better understanding of the design intent. Prototyping not only presents a strong visualization of the design but also helps the stakeholders to understand the look and feel of the final product. Furthermore, it gives the design team clarity on why they are designing and who they are designing for.

2. Help gather feedback and requirements. A client or prospect customer will not have any idea of your design or of what they wanted if they can’t see it in real life. The solution is to create a prototype of the design. It will give a much better idea to the client and if the client wants changes they can do it immediately. It will save funds even before the real project starts.

3. Early changes save cost and time. Changes done towards the end would mean not just radical restructuring but also more rework and speculation. When you have a preliminary model on hand, it is possible to make the desired changes early. At this point, there is no significant investment made yet. Thus, making early changes can help reach the goals faster.

4. Validation before mass production. Prototyping facilitates multiple discussions and iterations on the design before sending it for final production. This reiterative phase of the project makes it easier to be sure that what you are creating is what your customer needs.

5. Provides quality assurance. Aside from tweaking the design until it is acceptable, prototyping allows testing of the prototype. By doing so, you can find any issues or flaws in the product. You can develop quality assurance testing methodologies and standards before the production run.

6. Measures the acceptable tolerance levels. This means you can decide at the prototyping phase if any adjustments can be done to the product to save further.

7. Know the real cost of producing the parts. Prototypes will give engineers real insights into the quantity of material needed. It will help them to get the actual cost-per-unit when mass producing the product.

8. More iterations make a better product. With prototyping, you can modify your tooling as you can adjust the tooling and equipment. On top of that, more feedback means more changes in making the product better. And a prototype can help you save time and money because it is easy to create the changes you want and test them until you arrive at the final product.

Let’s Prototype

Creating a prototype is a necessary step before launching the final product. It is the first step in the journey to market and reveals the hidden obstacles and unforeseen challenges. As well as the initial look and feel of a product. The prototype is there so that you don’t have to wait until the manufacturing stage to discover what is wrong. Isn’t it nice to uncover and solve the problems earlier at a lot less cost with the Prototypes?