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Britt Armour

Digital Marketing Coordinator

 

A mobile app prototype is a working and interactive model of the end product. It communicates the design and navigation of the app to stakeholders in order to maximize the efficiency of the development process. Prototypes bring ideas to life and transform a creative vision into a reality to align the customers’ needs with the goals of an organization.

 

Many new product ideas fail because they don’t capture a) whether it’s a good idea, b) whether its easy to use and c) the final outcome of the product. App prototyping is a quick and less expensive way to validate a product, however; it has many other unsung benefits.

 

Exploring New Ideas and Improvements

 

App prototyping validates an idea as well as allows for exploration of new ideas and solutions early on in the development process. During the prototyping phase, user testing can help identify possible improvements which can be made before the product is completed. A prototype is the product foundation that can either be improved upon or altered to meet the project goals. Testing the product during a user test will trigger new ideas and confirm which direction to take with development. This allows solutions to problems early on during the development process which saves costs in the long run. It’s far less expensive to rectify problems in the beginning stages of development rather than towards the end. App prototypes allow for a closer examination and evaluation of the final deliverable.

 

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Client and Stakeholder Involvement

 

Developing an app prototype provides the client and stakeholders with a greater sense of involvement during the development of their product. Prototyping allows for the developers and designers to explore ideas and exchange feedback with the client and user. This way, the final product will be more likely to embody the company’s own ideas and features while ultimately meeting their specific project goals. Getting everyone involved including the developers, designers, stakeholders, and clients will help to examine the problems in greater detail and encourage feedback to create a product that will meet organizational and user needs.

 

Funding

 

The product must go beyond the theoretical in order to achieve buy-in from both internal and external stakeholders. Before a stakeholder invests, the prototype must provide them with a tangible product to ensure that its a valuable investment. Prototyping helps to reduce uncertainties and provides a demonstration of how the final product will work and also ensures investors that the product is valuable enough to invest in.

 

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Market Validation

 

Creating a product that results in deep customer engagement is a difficult task to accomplish. It’s easy to test the usability of an app, but how do you know if there’s a demand for it? The answer is running the prototype through a user test.

 

According to a study by Localytics, 22% of downloaded mobile apps are only used once and 62% of app users are completely gone after one month. It’s important to have a goal that goes beyond the mere number of downloads and retains users by providing continual value. Once the app is downloaded, metrics like app engagement, usage, and lifetime value become the focus. App prototyping will validate the product in terms of the right market fit and user experience. This will save on costs before proceeding with further development.

 

Exploration and experimentation through mobile app prototyping will produce better end results and create apps that are valuable for the user. New products often fail as a result of the lack of demand, poor market research, and a flawed product. App prototyping however, avoids these common mistakes and ensures that an efficient and valuable product is developed.

 



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