Design & Development

Product Development:

For most, but not all projects, we typical follow a process similarĀ to the one listed below. This is a general outline of getting a product idea from concept to market. It is a time tested formula and used in many companies across many industries.

Below is the process broken into the phases we normally use.

  • Concept Phase :

    This is the initial phase where the idea for the new product is generated and documented. The idea here is to flush out the idea as much as possible and assess if it is worth pursuing. To some degree, this is always done by an inventor or client before coming to us, for why else would someone hire a product design and development company unless they already have an idea they want to pursue.

  • Discovery Phase:

    This is an added phase in our process where a customer shares their idea with us so we can bid on it. It's common practice to sign a non-disclosure agreement up front with the customer to keep what is discussed confidential (keeping a customer's information confidential is something we do even without the agreement in place, unless agreed to by the customer). At the end of this phase we usually deliver a proposal to the customer with a firm quote for the preliminary phase and estimates for the other phases beyond that.

  • Preliminary Design Phase

    In this phase, we create a preliminary design based on the specifications agreed upon in the discovery phase. We create an engineering model and do any other engineering and design that is necessary to flush out the product so that there is a high level of confidence that the design will work before proceeding to detailing the parts and creating engineering drawings and documents.

  • Critical Design Phase

    Most of this phase is for detailing the design and creating engineering drawings and documents of the design presented at the Preliminary Design Review. Any changes or modifications to the design requested by the customer at the Preliminary Design Review are also incorporated before drawings are made. Once drawings and necessary documents are completed, these are sent out to manufacturing houses for quote so that the customer will have a detailed price for the building of the product. At the end of this phase the work is summarized and delivered to the customer at a Critical Design Review (CDR).

  • Testing Phase

    On simple projects this phase is often wrapped in with the build phase and we always do some testing of a product in the build phase before sending a prototype to a customer. The testing can be as simple as "does it work or not?" but with more intricate assemblies this can become much more complicated as you are not just testing if it works but how well or how long it works.

  • Beta Build Phase / Release Build Phase

    Often the product development cycle listed above is repeated several times mainly to iron out bugs or fix problems that were discovered in testing. The goal of the beta phase is usually to create a short run of prototypes that are as close to release as possible and get them into the hands of key testers, select customers or others to do some final testing before a full product launch. The release build phase is usually just to get the final bugs out of the design as production is ramped up for the initial product launch.

Our Valuable Customer

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