At itsbase, a prototype is any version of a product meant to test and refine productprior (and if) introducing it to a market.
Insoftware development, even that haphazard sketch on a napkin could technicallybe considered a prototype. The best prototype companies would consider manysoftware products today as endless prototypes, since their constant stream ofversion updates and improvements act as a mind-numbing modern-day take onthe Ship of Theseus paradox –after so many changes, is it even the same product anymore?
Physicalproduct development, especially with the best prototype companies, requires amore involving process. Developers cannot view their customer-base as aconstant stream of beta-testers. Because the public’s tolerance for productfailure is extremely low outside of the software realm.
Whencreating a physical product, there are several types of prototyping services.These can each be used to perform a different function of the prototypingprocess.