When it comes to developing actual physical products electronics engineers have two options: Proof of Concept and Prototyping. But what is the difference between the two stages and which one is most appropriate for your stage in the design lifecycle?
In this blog, we are going to explore the difference between the two concepts because while they are similar there are key differences between them which you need to understand if your final design is to be successful.
What is Proof of Concept?
When designing and developing new electronics products, it is a good idea to validate your initial ideas with a physical device.
Proof of Concept is an early-stage physical product which is used to test the feasibility and demonstrate the functionality of your design. Proof of Concept devices are usually constructed using off-the-shelf components and development kits to keep costs down and speed up development.
Proof of Concept designs are also useful for forecasting the cost of manufacturing. Often product designers add functionality which is not strictly necessary but significantly adds to the cost of the product. A Proof of Concept can help designers focus on the functionality which is needed and remove everything else.
Finally, Proof of Concept can also be used to create a minimum viable product to showcase your product to investors. Entrepreneurs are more likely to get funding for a new product if they can show a physical device to potential investors.
What is Prototyping?
Prototypes are constructed later in the development cycle, usually, after the schematics and PCB design have been completed. A prototype should be based on the final “real-world” product and allow end-users to carry out extensive field testing of the device.
The prototype stage is one of the most important in the product design lifecycle. Prototypes should be used to uncover any problems which were not predicted during the design and feasibility stage. This ensures all issues are corrected before going into full production greatly increasing reliability out in the field.
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If you would like more information about Hetech’s electronics design and prototyping solutions, get in touch with us using the contact form here or give our team a call on +61 (0)7 3297 9700 to discuss your project further.