We’re sure you’ve heard the sentence that gives this blog its title. Today we are going to relate it to an activity that’s sure to be familiar: product pre-certification tests, those that preceed the “official” certification test required to guarantee that the product (1) will work correctly, and (2) will not generate safety problems for the user, nor interfere with its surrounding equipment in all foreseen working conditions.
“Official” test must be carried out with the final product, meaning the latest version of the hardware and firmware, mechanics, wiring, etc. For this reason, they are often carried out when the product is to be put into production. So, then why do trials with prototypes that will surely suppose additional cost and delay?
At IKOR we think that in most cases the cost as well as the time-to-market are improved by these test. We recommend that our clients carry out test with the first prototype that is “reasonably similar” to the final product, meaning that drastic changes to components or layout are not required for moving on to the production process. And what are we looking for? Mainly two things:
- Early identification of the product’s weak points (or, let’s be optimistic, confirming that the product is well made from its initial design)
- Reducing the product’s cost, adjusting the design to the product’s real needs.
At IKOR we have Laboratory Services for carrying out Pre-Certification prototype test prior to production (IKOR – Product Development Services), which allows for new clients to understand the product’s weaknesses in advance when commercial pressure is still “light” and there is time to react (reconsidering specifications, redesigning it, updating the commercial launch plan…).
And when it comes to the product’s cost? These test allow for the design to be adjusted to actual need without being conditioned by time constraints that often hinder optimization:
– Engineering: I received the Climate Check and the board barely heated up.
– Purchasing: By reducing the radiator and cutting the multilayer PCB we would save €3 per board. The forecast is to sell 10,000 units per year, and this product will sell for no less than 6 years!
– Engineering: Yes, but in three months we go to market… At this point, we’d better leave it