Every business runs on innovation and creativity. From launching a new product to designing marketing campaigns for a well-established company, it is quite important to make everything visually appealing and aesthetically outstanding.
In today’s industry of rapidly growing products, the significance of UX (User Experience) design is becoming evenly popular and demanding. In fact, UI/UX Designing serves as a secret sauce for design-led companies to outperform their competitors.
''They slow us down to speed us up. By taking the time to prototype our ideas, we avoid costly mistakes such as becoming too complex too early and sticking with a weak idea for too long.''
— Tim Brown, CEO & President of IDEO
Incorporating all designing concepts, prototyping plays an important role before launching any product in the market. After all, every invention demands a set of iteration to bring the best of all to a competitive market. So, let’s learn about prototyping in detail-
What is Prototyping?
Prototyping is an experimental process where designing teams are involved in the process of implementing an idea into a tangible product to test its feasibility. This ultimately improves time to market by minimizing the number of errors and correcting those at an early stage.
Also, it varies as per the degree of fidelity- Low Fidelity to High Fidelity.
Low Fidelity vs High Fidelity
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Fidelity refers to the level of functionality and detailing in your prototype.
Low Fidelity prototypes are often paper based that consist of sticky notes and sketches. This is ideally great for high level brainstorming and collaboration. However, it does not allow user interaction. Some of the key features are-
Easy to make changes and test new iterations
You can get a quick overview of product
Anyone can produce low fidelity prototype
High Fidelity prototypes almost represents the final version of a product that includes Digital Prototypes through Adobe XD. With this type of prototyping, it becomes quite easy to judge how well it matches users’ needs and solves their real life problems.
These are highly functional and interactive and include most or all of the content that will appear in final design. Some of the key features are-
Enables you to predict how users will respond
Serves as a good demonstration to stakeholders
Helps you receive meaningful feedback during usability testing
We at Rentech Digital are using prototyping tools to get rid of hundreds of problems associated with designing. It helps our creative designers to bring every innovative idea to reality. You can schedule a call or connect with our support team to prototype your future product.
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How to choose the right UI/UX software?
UI/UX Designing Software is a fast-moving game in the competitive market. It is considered one of the powerful tools for branding and lets you show your client different iterations of the product.
But, how to select the right UI/UX Design Software?
Here, we have mentioned a few factors to consider while selecting any ideal UI/UX prototyping software-
Pricing is the key factor in UI /UX design software and you can’t take it lightly. Various prototyping tools are available from free to paid options, including one time payment to a monthly subscription. Compare all features and services it offers and accordingly select the right one.
While selecting any pricing package, note that you don’t miss on intended usage. A few of designing softwares may be ideal for mobile app designs while others for web design. You know your projects better than any. Know what is your usability – speed, animation or any and then make any buying decision.
Your old files and documents are important to you therefore check that the software you have selected can safely migrate files without any data loss so you don’t have to start everything from scratch.
When you select any UI UX design tool, you need to check out different features that it offers. These features would be responsible for speeding up your workflow or helping you improve quality. Go for such a tool that can speed up performance for a quick completion of your project.
Any UI UX design tool must have features for commenting and giving feedback on progress. Through this, you can stay in constant touch with your client and learn their expectations.
The Best UI/UX Designing Tools for 2021
Here we have discussed some of the Best UI/UX design tools to make prototyping easy. Check these out now-
1. Figma- Browser Based Tool
Which use Figma?Companies
Deals with real time collaboration tools
Easy to create scroll actions for fast navigation
Get specs you need with Inspect Tab for Typography, Color, Borders, and more
Available at : macOS and Windows
Pricing:Free up to 2 editors and 3 projects; paid version starts from $12 per editor/month
2. Adobe XD
Adobe XD (XD=Experience Design) is one of the popular prototyping tools for creating elements and animate transitions (micro-interactions) between them. This is the best UI UX design tool that offers collaboration and allows you to work offline.
It provides plenty of plugins to extend functionality and widely support vector and raster files. You can preview even on mobile and share it in another without any hassle.
Does Adobe XD require coding?
In order to create an initial design, you don’t require coding skills. But, when your design gets ready, you need to export your assets and recreate designs in HTML editors. Here, what, coding skills come into picture.
Is Adobe XD free forever?
Yes. Adobe XD is free forever. You can explore as much as you can.
Use 3D Transforms to showcase your work with an in-depth perspective
Create reusable buttons and build resizable charts you want
Create interactions by adding hover and toggle
Make changes instantly with drag and drop repeat elements
Available at : macOS and Windows
Pricing Free forever. Paid version starts at 9.99$ per month, per user.
3. Sketch – Go-To UI/UX Design Software
Sketch is an incredibly popular UI UX Design Software that works ideally for mobile app, website designing and prototyping.
It is quite light weighted and beginner’s friendly and offers a clear and easy to use interface.
It has a fully vector based workflow that makes it easy to create and design beautiful and high-quality artwork from start to end.
Some of the common or most used UI elements are- Bubbles, bars, buttons that can be copied repetitively and used in designing any app.
Easy to share prototype and get instant feedback through Sketch’s cloud interface
Offers a Big plugin library to create responsive designs
Ensure a smooth transition between design screens (artboards), add animations, and create working prototypes
Available at : macOS only
Pricing: Fully Featured 30-Days free trial, starts from $99/ year
4. InVision – Web Based Prototyping Tool
InVision is one of the most popular web based prototyping and animation tools where you can explore tons of features from custom animations to whole sites including pen tool, artboards, vision boards. Did we mention, it works offline and supports vector and raster files?
Create stylesheets, discuss design challenges, get pixel perfect designs, and export adaptively in just a few seconds. Thus, start creating responsive designs and rich prototypes with dynamic elements and animations.
Here, newbies may take a little bit of time in learning how it works. Thus, the learning curve is not too short. However, it varies as per different people.
InVision supports files in multiple formats like GIF, PNG, JPG, AI and PSD format
Easy to upload files and add gestures, transitions and animations
You can set columns for needs, review, To Do, In Progress or Approved as an appropriate section
It also has push and pull integrations with apps like JIRA, Dropbox, Trello, Slack and others
Available at : Windows and macOS
Pricing: Available in free version. Pro starts from $7.95/per user/ per month
5. Balsamiq – A quick Prototyping Tool based on Flash
Balsamiq is an amazing wireframing tool that makes it easy to create low fidelity wireframes. If you have zero knowledge in wireframing, you can still jump it and put together ones that look good.
It provides plenty of samples with sketching and wireframing skin on a whiteboard making tool accessible to anyone, no matter what will be the skillset. Balsamiq has a shorter learning curve because anyone can use it, from beginner to power user.
Drag and Drop to arrange pre-built widgets and styled it as a hand-drawing
Has a large library of UI elements to do quick wireframe
Both clients and customers can come together to explain their needs clearly
Available at : Windows, macOS and Web (Cloud)
Pricing: Starts from $9/month
6. Origami Studio – Best Tool to Design, animate, and prototype
Origami Studio was earlier developed by Facebook to help teams build and design products. It is one of the best prototyping tools where you can add rules and logic to your interactions. Here, you can preview mockup live on your mobile phone by using Origami Live.
Easy to export your prototype components (including animations) with just one click
Capture, trim and record your prototypes directly
Create visualizations from live audio or recorded samples
It has access to GPS data and creating device motion video
Available at : Android, iOS and OS X
7. Adobe Illustrator – Vector Graphics Software
Adobe Illustrator is a design program and vector graphics editor where you can create stunning logos, gorgeous graphics absolutely anywhere with its easy to use tools.
It lets you create everything that you require to market your brand from web and mobile graphics, product packaging and billboards, book illustrations and many others.
It has an expansive typography toolkit
Works with Photoshop on iPad
Create patterns that spans your canvas with Grid Repeat
Easy to find live streams from top creative professionals
Available at : iPad, Tablet and Desktop
Pricing: Starts from $239.88/year
The Final Words
Above discussed software prototyping tools have their unique features, specialties that suits different needs. Some improve the workflow of your project while other tools enable flexible designing and live previewing.
These tools are one of the best and most commonly used UI/UX design softwares that enhances your performance and facilitates unique wireframing and a cleaner interface.
List out your requirements and know which tools stand perfect for you. For professional services, hire UI/UX Designers from Rentech Digital, because we know which design suits the best for your unique business.
Give us a call and book an appointment for free consultation services!