The word “prototype” is thrown around so much these days that it’s kind of hard to keep track of the actual definition of it. By all means, defining a prototype is not that difficult. The easiest way to explain so is by stating that a prototype is the initial development of any product we aim to create en masse. A working prototype, however, is an entirely different thing, and we need to dig a little deeper to explain it adequately. The development or creation of a working prototype is how we bring to life an early model of a part that needs to be processed and revised to offer some insight to the developing team about performance issues. It’s also something that can be used to show potential investors our product or a nearly-finished design that can be used for marketing purposes.
Why do you Need a Functional Prototype?
Any decent rapid prototyping service out there is more than capable of providing a functional prototype using engineering, 3D design, and 3D tooling to fabricate a part that can work as good as one manufactured on a production cycle. A working prototype has become an essential part of any development project since the ones asking for this type of tasks make multiple revisions on the finished product before asking for a production batch. Rapid prototyping services cannot concede the luxury of cutting costs at this stage, especially when they are tasked with the design phase. More than often the people looking for these services are creating additional parts to improve the performance of delicate of machinery or custom pieces for more significant projects.
What does a Working Prototype Tell About a Developer?
A working prototype ultimately is a card of presentation. When a rapid prototyping service is able to craft a piece according to given settings they must be able to work in integrated fashion with their customer. It’s very likely that he will ask for a fully functional prototype to be shipped overseas to test the performance of the part and to notice the shortcomings on the design. A company that is willing to comply with these levels of exigencies is prone to make more money than its competitors, and it’s also exposed to the type of good feedback that it’s only given by accomplishing successfully what is requested out if them. The willingness of these companies to go one step further and offer their input speaks volumes of their service. Even more, if they are capacitated to understand the mechanics of each project that comes their way.
After these lines, you should have a pretty good idea of what is a working prototype, bear in mind that not every rapid prototyping service under the sun can provide this particular type of tooling. Crafting a prototype it’s not as difficult or expensive as it used to, but it still demands certain levels of craftsmanship and knowledge that not everyone has. Getting a functional one is even more complicated, so do your best to have a pretty clear idea of what you need if you are a developer, and try to be prepared if you are a service provider.