min read ·
March 8, 2021

Breaking Down the Difference Between Rapid Prototyping and High-Fidelity Prototyping

When your company looks through various research and development opportunities, you may come across rapid prototyping, a process that involves incorporating multiple ideas to create mock-ups before creating a fully-fledged digital product. However, you may wonder how best to go through the iterations you need before fully-fledged development. But don’t worry; we will provide you with the information you need! 

Consultant drawing a rapid paper prototype

This article will discuss what makes rapid prototyping different from high-fidelity prototyping. We will also talk about tips that will help your company initiate rapid prototyping procedures. Take this as an opportunity to be well-informed about your digital products’ direction. Doing this lets you lead your team to success, and innovate the technological field and your target industry! 

What Does Rapid Prototyping Have Over High-Fidelity Prototyping? 

Consider the following features of rapid prototyping to help you better understand what sets it apart from high-fidelity prototypes and other variants: 

  1. Allows your team to test out more ideas quickly: One of the significant differences about rapid prototypes is that you don’t need to be well-versed in software development and don’t require anyone from your team to be a developer. You can start with simple materials, such as pen and paper. For high-fidelity prototypes, you have to use more complicated software. Consequently, you are limited to testing fewer concepts due to the time it takes to make mock-ups or designs on the screen.
  1. Doesn’t require software engineering: Most companies are convinced that prototyping requires technological services, but that’s only a misconception! The right approach is to try different versions and concepts until you can take it further by encoding it as finished software. Rapid prototyping allows you to explore ideas quickly without writing a code line. On the other hand, high-fidelity prototypes are often more finished and ready for pre-launching, making it possibly more high-stakes. 
  1. Lowers rework risk: One of the best things about rapid prototypes is they go through testing, quickly iterated and earlier communicated across stakeholders before reaching the final stage. It means reworking happens before significant commitments happen, and assumptions are validated before they become a risk or issue. In contrast, high-fidelity prototyping can significantly have a higher risk for costly reworks due to fewer iterations and its long lead time.
  1. Little-to-no spending required: Many technology-based companies often have to spend a fortune on high-fidelity prototypes because of its labour-intensive procurement. They often also need highly skilled software developers. Fortunately, you only need a fraction of high-fidelity prototyping cost when rapid prototyping instead, allowing your company to be more cost-effective! Rapid prototyping lower fidelity assets combined with timely research and team collaboration.

Rapid Prototyping and High-Fidelity Prototyping
Examples of different rapid prototyping assets

How Do I Succeed in Rapid Prototyping? 

Remember the following tips to guide you through the rapid prototyping stage of your digital product development: 

  1. Document every step of your work: Remember, just because it’s not working for your current mock-up doesn’t mean it’s not worth considering later on. That’s why you should capture all your ideas, data, and other related rapid prototyping elements that can come in handy for your finished product.
  1. Establish clear goals: It’s easy to get lost at any prototyping stage, especially if you and your team lose its direction. That’s why it’s vital to remember why you are creating your products in the first place. This way, everyone can participate actively and stay committed to succeeding at every digital product development stage.
  1. Consider collaborating with software developers in charge of the product: If you already have a rapid prototype ready for consideration, find developers who understand the technical limitations and discuss how you can make your prototype considerations easier to develop. That way, you can create something that you envisioned, and that’s easy to launch into your target market!
  2. Don’t get caught up in detail: Sketches and simple wireframes are your go-to for rapid prototyping. Keep colour, shapes, images, or copy to the minimum or avoid them entirely. Think about your prototype’s purpose and stick to the bare minimum to visualise and communicate your idea.


Prototyping can be challenging, especially if you’re confused about the different procedures. Fortunately, you now have a better understanding of rapid prototyping and what your company needs to do. All that’s left is to build an efficient, highly competent team you can rely on to make the best digital products and ensure your ideal vision for them comes true! 

Are you looking for professional software developers to help you with your prototyping? We at Fabric Group can provide you with that. We can offer you the best software engineering solutions, enabling you to build custom digital platforms and succeed in your research and development. Partner with us today to become well-equipped and ready to create your prototypes!


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