What is Prototype Model?
A prototype model is used to develop the incomplete software program and its versions. It is a software development method. It is used to build and test the earlier version of the final product. It is an iterative process and this model mainly works in situations in which the requirements are available well ahead of time.
In the prototype model, the requirement should be defined in details as much as possible. The design is developed for the new system and from that design, the first prototype is created. In the prototype model, the working programs are prepared quickly.
Phases of the Prototyping Model
The different phases are as follow:
- Communication: This is the phase where the developer and Client set up the meeting and talk about the objectives that need to be achieved for the software.
- Design: The design has been done quickly as the requirements are cleared from both ends in providing and receiving end. It is used to construct the prototype. It includes the important aspects of the software that is input and output but mainly focused on visible aspects than planned activities.
- Modeling: It provides a better idea of the requirement to develop the software and a better understanding of the software product.
- Deployment: Before deployment, the client evaluates the software and if the client is not satisfied then it is refined according to the client’s requirements. This process goes on until the point client requirements do not accomplish. After the client’s satisfaction with the product, the product finally deploys to the production environment. It is thoroughly evaluated and tested, and maintenance is done on a regular basis.
Advantages of Prototype Model
There are several advantages of using the prototype model:
- This model has increased the involvement of user and developer for creating the product to be on the same page.
- The user is able to understand what is done and what is left according to the requirement at implementation time. This helps in changing the requirement at an early stage if required.
- The defects or bugs can be detected at an early stage.
- It helps in reducing cost and time.
- It helps in providing feedback from the user and changes the things accordingly.
- In this model, it is easy to identify the missing, confusing and difficult functionalities.
Disadvantages of Prototype Model
The disadvantages of the prototype model are as follow:
- Sometimes it is difficult for the user to find the difference between the actual product or system and prototype.
- Prototype model does not work where insufficient requirements are mentioned.
- It increases the complexity of the system and its deadlines.
- It is not feasible to use the existing prototype to develop the new system.
- Sometimes it takes a lot of effort to build the prototype of the system.
- It is also referred to as a slow process as it takes a lot of time to develop the prototype.
- Sometimes a lot of changes confuses the client and shows no interest in it. It also hampers the productivity of the development team.
- It can be thrown away if the users are not satisfied with it.
When to Use Prototype Model?
It should be used when a lot of interaction is required of the end user with final systems like online systems, web applications or interfaces. These are having the highest amount of traffic from the users to continuously checking and using. It does require trained people to develop the system. It also requires client availability all the time for the inputs, feedback, and signs off for the different prototype built.
How does the Prototype Model Work?
The prototype model mainly works at the high end in below format:
- Objectives determination.
- Develop the code.
- Communication and refine.
The developers mainly take prototype model work in the below way:
- Define their goal to achieve for the software and take the requirements from the client.
- They generally take 2 or 3 features to start with and later on they also refined the version as well.
- Creation of designs.
- Discussions with panels and team members, stakeholders, users, researchers.
- Documentation completed and design finalized after doing the changes discussed with all the members.
- Design the prototype.
- Consult the people and approach the appropriate entities.
- Add another feature if everything and output as per the agreement between developers and client.
- Improvements have done after communication with the client.
- Implementation and deployment of the feature for the client.
Why do we Use the Prototype Model?
The prototype model is used because of its advantages. It gives the clear picture of software what is being developed and not to the client earlier and before the implementation stage as well. It helps in saving the later part of issues that might occur. It helps in communication of client and developer to make the product as per requirement and easier to understand them as well for the developers from the viewpoint of the customer. The prototype model provides different types of model as well. Please find the below available prototyping:
- Rapid Prototyping.
- Evolutionary Prototyping.
- Incremental Prototyping.
- Extreme Prototyping.
There are many systems that have been developed with the prototype model and it achieved success as well for both developers and client. The dynamic system development method, evolutionary system method and rapid method is being developed. There are some tools, screen generators are developed with the prototype model.
The prototype model is the methodology of a working prototype or doing the work that comes first to the developer and creates the sample of it. The system that needs processing of data on a large scale and functionality with fewer interfaces does not get benefit from prototyping. It can be extra work for the developer to do.
The prototype model is becoming a very popular software development method to understand the requirement of the client at an early stage. This model is good for the systems which do require to go through the various screens to process the data and give the exact look of the final system
This has been a guide to Prototype Model. Here we have discussed the Phases, Advantages and the Disadvantages of Prototype Model. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –