From Prototype to Production: 3 Things You Need to Know

There are reasons why we are seeing more innovative products being brought to the market this past couple of years. Aside from the growing demand for better hardware and smart devices, the entry barriers to the hardware market have also been lowered thanks to the use of rapid prototyping and 3D environments.

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Anyone can bring a product idea to the market with the right tools and skills. The whole process of designing a product, making prototypes, and getting the product ready for the manufacturer is straightforward. That said, there are still several important things to know before you get started.

Your First Idea Will Not Be Your Best

One of the most common mistakes inventors – and companies behind new products – make is rushing through the product development and prototyping phases. Sure, you want to get the product to the market as quickly as possible; there are some advantages to be gained from being the fastest. However, releasing the first iteration of your product idea is the recipe for disaster.

Your first idea and the first prototype you develop from it are not your best. You can always make adjustments, refine the entire concept, and smoothen the edges a little bit. These small refinements show in the final product and customers will appreciate the extra care you take before releasing the product to the market.

You actually have more tools to use, especially with 3D design and modern development software at your fingertips. That brings us to our next important point.

Be Agile, but Have a Plan

As mentioned before, the tempting thing to do is rush through the development process to enter the market as quickly as possible. You can still be agile and flexible without sacrificing product quality. What you don’t want to do is be agile for the sake of being agile.

Moving from one version to the next quickly is something that can be done when you have a clear plan in mind. It is also an approach that requires the right tools and expertise. When you have clear objectives in mind, you can move quickly through the design, prototyping, and refinement phases while heading towards a predetermined set of goals.

Circuit board design is a good example. You can be quick with the design of your circuit board just to get to manufacturing sooner, but you often end up with a board design that isn’t really suitable for manufacturing. Instead of taking this route, define clear goals of what you need from the circuit board and use 3D PCB design software to help you create an effective board with minimum issues.

Testing

Testing is the final piece of the puzzle. Thanks to 3D environment and simulation tools, you can test the concept of your product even before making your first prototype. The 3D PCB design software mentioned earlier, for example, allows you to see if components will fit together on the board with the layout you created.

More importantly, don’t hesitate to go back to the drawing board if you do find potential issues to solve. You can never be too careful with the design of your product, even if that means making minute changes. Once again, customers will appreciate your attention to detail and the way you take extra care with the design of your product.

Keep these three things in mind as you venture into the world of hardware product development. Bring your best ideas to life and conquer the growing market sooner than you think so you can develop another product for your customers.

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