Contract Electronics Manufacturing and PCB Assembly Blog

A Great Product Begins With A Great Prototype!

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Thu, Mar 12, 2015 @ 06:00 AM

contact_electronics_manufacturingConsumers today are demanding more electronics, but they're also demanding better electronics.  That's the problem facing many electronics firms trying to find ways to keep up with consumer demand.  Even as people add to the gadgets they carry around, they also are relying on online materials to decide what to purchase next.

In fact, according to Nielsen, consumers globally are most likely to research electronics online before buying.

An electronics firm concerned about their reputation, or looking to grow their core customer base, simply can't afford to release substandard devices.  A robust prototyping process, though a PCB prototype assembly partner, can help guarantee a device that's well-received by its users.

Five Reasons You Need A Quality PCB Prototype Assembly Service

1 - Refining your design for modern equipment.

Many don't realize this, but a good electronics assembly service can often improve a device's size and durability simply by optimizing it for their processes.  The most modern facilities can significantly shrink devices by improving the layout of their internals.  Often, this results in better build quality as well.

2 - Robust stress-testing.

With so many devices designed to fit into someone's pocket or bag,  they need to be able to stand up to some abuse.  That the "bendability" of smartphones has become a matter of contention says something about how important stress-tests can be in product design.

A good PCB assembler has the facilities for numerous stress-tests and real-world usage simulations.  While it's impossible to simulate every abuse an owner might inflict on a product, stress-testing will greatly improve its reliability.  

3 - Experimenting with features/form factor.

Consumers also want choice, so it's nearly expected that devices will come with a range of options in size, performance, and utility.  At times, trying to decide on the right combinations can be difficult, so prototyping allows you to test a number of designs at once to see which fit.

Those prototypes could also be used as the basis for focus group work or other consumer surveys to help narrow your choices down.

4 - Softwarecontract-electronics-manufacturing

Many electronics assembly partners - especially in the US - are now including software as part of their overall service package.  This can provide significant improvements to device performance quality, when it's being written specifically to fit the hardware.

The prototyping process helps here as well, especially if you're experimenting with design variations.  You can ensure the software for each variation is working properly, rather than hoping a one-size-fits-all OS package will work.

 5 - Failure Rate Predictions 

Nothing in life is perfect, and there's always a chance of individual component failures causing problems in purchased electronics.  Robust prototyping and testing beforehand can yield highly accurate numbers on expected failure rates.

These, in turn, can be used to optimize post-sale support.  Components most likely to fail can be over-produced through carefully-calculated production runs.  Then they're ready when support needs them, reducing costs to you as well as reducing inconvenience to the buyer.

Extensive Prototyping Buys Better Products

Think of prototyping as an insurance policy against later problems.  A little investment in R&D ahead of time can ultimately pay off with a much better product that gets glowing reviews from its users.  In a world where word-of-mouth is even more important in building momentum for a product, that effort will pay off in the long term.

Contact ZenTech today for a free consultation on your electronics assembly needs.

 

Electronic Interconnect Cabling Whitepaper from Zentech

Topics: pcb assembly manufacturer, pcb prototype assembly