Wireframes provide a visual (and sometimes, interactive) first-glimpse of how a digital product will look and function.
Similar to the blueprints that an architect produces when designing a building, wireframes can act as the specification for screen designs and how each element on that screen will function.
Wireframes, especially when annotated, are a very powerful design communication tool that provide an accurate functional specification for stakeholders and developers.
As the wireframes and overall design direction ideas are refined, the wireframes begin to increase in their accuracy and complexity.
Prototypes add an additional ‘realistic’ layer to wireframes, in that they accurately emulate the functionality of the final product that will be tested and released.
However unlike actual coding, prototypes can be built in a fraction of the time with all product stakeholders getting to look at and ‘experience’ the product before the expensive visual design branding and coding begins.
Expiriti uses a mix of raw sketching (low-fidelity wireframes), Sketch App (high fidelity wireframes) and Axure (interactive prototypes) as our tools of choice.
It’s these prototypes that we have used on countless occasions for usability testing to check for any usability issues before coding begins.
Prototyping is especially critical for mobile and tablet interface designs.
Interactive prototypes can be tested ‘on-device’ to gain real insight into how the product will look-and-feel on the actual devices it’s intended for.
If you need help with communicating the design of your digital product, please make an enquiry or get in touch