It’s often a challenge to launch new physical products, but it doesn’t have to be. Small teams and individuals alike can develop amazing electronic devices these days that are easier than ever before. Successful entrepreneurs know that bringing a new product or service on the market is far from easy.
There are a lot of steps in the product development process for new electronic products, but it can be done. I have broken this down into six manageable tasks with simple instructions on what you need to do next and when so your idea becomes a reality.
So, let’s start.
A Printed Circuit Board (PCB) is the blueprint of our electronics. A circuit schematic drawing can be used to create all parts needed in an electronic device’s construction with relative ease by following simple instructions. These include how each component should look according to design intent—very much like building houses.
The design process begins with the right topology and components. You may also research how to make it work or even breadboard before committing your ideas into circuits.
Using the same software package as before, now create a PCB layout. A portion of the PCB layout may be automatically routed, but most require manual input for performance optimization. Mistakes in power and RF circuits (Bluetooth, WiFi GPS, etc.) are common in these sensitive areas, so extra care must be taken during the design process.
When the PCB layout is complete, software designers will check for any errors in accordance with their specifications and ensure that all rules have been met. It also checks wire widths and trace spacing to ensure that everything matches up correctly on paper before moving onto manufacturing.
Also, to get a perfect layout of your circuit, you need to know what specifications are required from the manufacturer. There’s no one specification that applies in all cases, and each PCB company has its own set depending on its process.
Once you get your PCB design just right, it’s time for the next step: sending off data to prototyping experts. Here is a reliable name in the field. This should take about 1-2 weeks (without paying an extra fee), and then they’ll send back completed prototypes of what’s been made.
Once the prototype is back, it will need to be evaluated, and any problems found fixed. Though it is rare, there may arise some issues. So, it is always best to be prepared for the worst.
A few problems are minor inconveniences, but many can become big issues if left unchecked.
Debugging a new circuit can be difficult, but it’s important to get the job done right. It would not do any good if your estimate ends up being off and you take longer than expected to fix that problem.
No matter what you’re designing, a microcontroller can be found controlling it. From home appliances and robots to medical devices—the potential for electronics is endless with these tiny chips. Moreover, microcontrollers are programmed in C language mostly, and the assembly language is used if the program needs to be super-efficient or fast.
For some projects, the programming will be done by someone who designed the circuit itself. For other times though (and this is more common), a software specialist needs to get involved for complex designs because they are too tricky with what’s happening inside them.
The engineer who handles this step is different from the one that does steps 1-4. The 3D modeling expert will help to realize your product design vision, but you must have someone who understands what color or material should best suit the look and feel of each part.
For instance, do you know how Apple’s products always look so cool? That’s because their industrial designers designed them. They’re the engineers that bring designs to life and make them come alive on a page or screen for us all to see.
In addition, there are advantages to both 3D printing and injection molding for creating prototypes. However, it is crucial that whoever does the design has experience with either technology because they work very differently when producing large quantities over time in high volumes.
Many countries have different electronic product certification requirements, but all must meet specific standards. The certifications required vary depending on what region the products will be sold in, including safety or emissions tests.
The development process for a new electronic hardware product is not easy. If you consider this, be sure to follow the steps outlined in our post from beginning to end and take all necessary precautions before committing to anything. By reading this guide, we hope that you can learn more about what it takes to create an entirely new device or accessory for electronics products.