It’s true that “a picture is worth a thousand words”. But in the case of mobile development, this may not hold true. When speaking with stakeholders, teammates or clients, it is important to demonstrate a non-static mobile app that includes an interactive design. The good news is that you now can communicate with more than just a picture without having to write lines of code to create a high-fidelity prototype.
Some people like to put pen to paper and start drawing in the conceptual phase of any project and this also extends to web and app development. Now, developers can start their quick design work while previewing on-screen contents as they edit.
Mobile App Prototyping
The term “visual prototyping” applies to the practice of creating user-centered experiences that provide a sense of what the real product will be in terms of design and functionality. Creating a visual prototype of a project includes things such as color combinations, graphics, fonts, and the look and feel of other components such as buttons, calls-to-action, menus, forms and other features.
Due to the complexity of software solutions and the investment that accompanies it (both in terms of time and money), using a prototyping tool is an important advance in getting a robust app up and running.
This way, you have many undeniable benefits of prototyping such as testing the concept you’re developing in a cost-effective environment. Services such as Kony Visualizer are software solutions designed to streamline this task. They reduce the number of defects as well as lowering the overall app development time:
What does the incipient design process involve? It consists of creating a first version, reviewing it, and finally creating another iteration. This is repeated until reaching something that is close to the intended final product. Incorporating feedback into the multiple iterations is both easy and efficient since many prototyping tools are highly collaborative in nature.
Among other things, some benefits of prototyping are:
Allow the business team and development team to communicate ideas more clearly and provide more efficient collaboration
Help test the solution and the concept behind it
Enable the development team to catch potential errors and weak spots before a proper implementation (which is oftentimes expensive)
Make it easier for early user interaction and getting their feedback
Nevertheless, it is still worth noting the downside of prototyping tools. In some cases, they can incentivize the inclusion of additional requirements/features that weren’t part of the original model. These revisions might not be relevant to the core value proposition and, if not properly prioritized, can deviate from the main goal.
Writing lines of code is no longer a prerequisite in the incipient design process. At a fraction of the final product cost, you can gain control of your mobile app prototyping. Visual and agile prototyping encompasses all of the important stages, while also providing a 360º view of a project. It can grant your team the opportunity to experiment with multiple approaches and test fresh ideas. A key is to ensure that everyone involved is on the same page, which translates to fewer missing requirements and errors as well as faster and better development.
Of course, building your prototype is just a small part of the big picture. But checking out the landscape of the current prototyping tools available is a great place to start.