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Prototyping Tools All Designers Must Try
Good communications and sharing of information are essential in all spheres. Communication can determine the success of any software design and development activity. This, of course, includes web and app design and development.
Prototyping offers one of the best means of communication these days. Prototyping tools are popular among project team members and other project stakeholders. Yet, it still takes quality prototyping tools to help create prototypes that can get the job done.
Prototypes and wireframes demonstrate how software products are supposed to function. Wireframes focus on a software system’s functionality and interactivity.
Prototypes are more detailed. They provide a picture of the expected look and feel of the eventual software solution.
The prototyping tools presented here represent the best of the bunch. They are great in terms of the visual and interaction fidelity they can demonstrate. Their ability to validate the accuracy and consistency of a design is also of the top quality. Also, they can ensure it is ready to be handed off to the developers.
The Justinmind all-in-one prototyping tool is exactly what you need when you’re looking for a way to demonstrate your web or app design characteristics during the design process, or to validate your design prior to handoff to a developer.
More than 4,000 web, Android, and iOS premade UI elements are at your disposal for creating wireframes or prototypes. These will, in turn, be used to optimize communications with team members, project managers, and clients, solicit feedback, and demonstrate whether a design is ready for acceptance.
Justinmind can save you significant amounts of time and money during design, and quite often during development as well. You can design and validate your proposed website’s or app’s navigation flows and switch effortlessly between the prototypes you build and the flow diagrams.
Justinmind also allows you to use design assets from any design tool, library, or file system to create your own UI component libraries, making it one of the top tools currently on the market for creating UI prototypes; and you can download it for free.
Supernova is a Mac OS X-based prototyping tool that allows you to convert Sketch designs directly into production-ready code. The quality of the code it produces is for use on iOS, Android, and React Native devices, and is on a par with the code you would expect from a professional developer.
Supernova is expected to become available on other platforms in the not-to-distant future.
The companion apps that come with the package allow testing on mobile devices, and you also have access to Supernova Cloud software that enables you to test your mobile apps on the web.
Developers will like the way in which this prototyping tool is able to automate several of the repetitive, laborious, and time-consuming tasks they are faced with including exporting code, exporting resources, and file naming.
Supernova is yours to try for free.
Savah App is more than your typical prototyping tool. It is made up of a set of features nicely bundled in a single package. As such, it gives you an all-in-one prototyping platform featuring a rich assortment of design, prototyping, collaborating and project management that allows you to view and test your prototypes on all devices, including iPhone X, Android, and Smartwatch.
With Savah App you can automate your design workflows, you can create password-protected projects for your designs screens. You can easily share prototypes and receive instant feedback from team members and stakeholders.
Savah App also helps smooth project design workflows by keeping prototypes under version control and its ability to smoothly integrate with Dropbox, Sketch, and other design tools.
Try the free plan while checking out Savah App’s 3 paid plans.
The Benefits of Prototyping
Prototyping has its advantages and disadvantages. This at one time used to be an issue for both designers and developers. There were questions about the quality and usefulness of the prototypes. Critics were pointing out the time involved in learning how to use prototyping tools. People also questioned the benefits, if any, that developers could take advantage of.
It’s different today. Prototyping tools are faster and more flexible. They are easy to use and able to simulate a proposed software solution down to the finest detail. They perform amazingly in terms of the design look and feel. The high level of interactivity and functionality is here, too.
Prototypes can help:
- Eliminate ambiguities in system requirements. They can reduce the errors that occur when attempting to interpret system functionality.
- Demonstrate what the software product is designed to do; not what it is capable of doing.
- Give developers overviews of a design’s workings and look and feel. They can enable them to focus on specific design components
- Discover and correct problems or errors early on in the design process. Also, they can clear up misunderstandings and ambiguities in the requirements.
- Firm up the details as to how a finished software product is expected to function. These tools can play a key role in design testing and acceptance and handoff to a developer.
- Promote collaboration and information sharing to give clients a sense of ownership.
- Make it easier for developers to estimate their costs and schedules. Resources necessary to complete a project can also be estimated.
- Serve as valuable reference points when version control is maintained. This is in case of disputes that can arise later in the development cycle.
The app and website prototyping tools recommended here can become valuable assets. Add them to your design toolkit, whether you’re a freelancer or part of a design team.
Developers stand to profit as well. Especially, when given the information that high-performance interactive prototyping tools provide.
These go-to prototyping tools can speed up design and development workflows. They can easily reduce design errors. Giving project stakeholders a sense of ownership of the design process is not an issue as well.