A comprehensive prototype is an advanced form of prototyping that involves building a model of the full product or system being developed. This type of prototype usually has all the key features and functions included, allowing it to be thoroughly tested for usability, performance, and accuracy. A prototype that implements most or all of the attributes of the final product, and offers the opportunity for rigorous testing in the field.
The development process typically follows a "top-down" approach where each individual component is built out from the most basic level to the more complex. This ensures that the end result is both reliable and fully functional. Comprehensive prototypes can also provide insights into how users interact with products, which can inform future design decisions. Furthermore, they are often used as proof-of-concepts when pitching new ideas to potential investors or customers.
Comprehensive prototypes should not be confused with working models which are ready-made versions of products available on the market; instead they represent projects still in development. An example of comprehensive prototype testing is Patagonia's product trials during extreme outdoor adventures, which ensure that the prototype is ready for anything and is good enough to be sold.
Related Keywords: Prototype Testing, Usability Testing, Top-Down Design Approach, Proof-of-Concepts, Working Models