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Rapid Prototyping Dos and Don’ts

As the mobile application market becomes ever more competitive as time goes on, developers have been forced to resort to certain analytical tools to help research their prospective markets before committing to the development of a product. Obviously testing is paramount to the success of any application, and with certain software suites and services, a developer can utilize what is called rapid prototyping. Rapid prototyping allows users to create multimedia prototypes of their applications before development, and then customize them in various ways to enable the testing of certain functionality and design ideas. All of this can be done in a quick and efficient manner, giving the developer a great upper hand as far as understanding their market goes. Another key point to testing is understanding what you should and should not do. There are certain testing routes that are a complete waste of time, and if you are not careful may even hurt your reputation and that of your application, before it is even released. This article is going to talk a bit about how to ensure that testing is done in the proper way using rapid prototype methods, all while preserving your business image.

Rapid Prototyping Dos and Don'ts

The most common mistake

Rapid prototyping allows you a quick and easy way to share your design ideas with anyone that you choose. One of the common mistakes that many developers make is not testing various mobile platforms with their design ideas. It’s important not only to test the popular platforms but also the more obscure ones. If your product simply does not work for a paying customer down the road, it can quickly turn sour and leave you looking quite unprofessional. You need to make sure that your test subjects are relevant to your end-goal market audience, otherwise they might miss the entire point of the application altogether.

Make things very clear for your target audience

Since your product is in a prototype stage, it’s very important that you properly document all functionality and clearly signify to the test what they should do and expect from the application. Without these lines drawn for the tester, your feedback is likely to be weak and unwholesome, essentially leaving you with nothing to develop from. This will cause your eventual product release to be quite weak as well. People need to know what to look for. This also brings up a key point, listen to what people are telling you about your prototypes. If you find that testers are consistently bringing up certain aspects of the application in a negative light, you should probably address it as soon as possible. Take everything at face value and maintain an objective stance during the prototype phase as far as feedback goes. Do not react to negative feedback, instead try to extract what is useful from it, and the move on. The more work you do properly in this phase, the less work you have to do when there are hundreds or even thousands of customers throwing all of their concerns and problems at you, causing your product’s reputation to plummet before it even has a chance to shine.

Stay true to the intended purposes of rapid prototyping

The key purpose of rapid prototyping is to flesh out design ideas in a quick and efficient manner, acquire test feedback from users, and then hit the drawing board again to make things even better, discarding the bad ideas and bringing in new ones. You should be very open minded at this stage in development. Do not make the mistake of getting lazy and becoming caught on certain ideas and functions that have proven themselves uninteresting to your target audience. At the end of the day, the customer is almost always right, remembering this can help you to see success with all of your application releases.

Author Bio:Nikhil Jain is a professional writer, blogger and editor that specializes in various IT related topics such as mobile web development,iPhone app prototyping, and network automation management systems.

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