One has to refresh your web design toolkit on a timely basis. Focusing on tools that help you explore new design assets for different projects is very important, especially if there are photography avenues and fonts. App prototyping tools are extremely important with regards to web and mobile design mockups and to make them better every time.
You might feel that you should be able to crack the mobile industry but feel unsure since you lack skills and experience. But mobile app prototyping is something that can be picked up easily. To start designing mobile apps, one should be conversant with the prototyping process and there are various tools to aid you in this regard. Start making your concept clear and then use one of the tools to make an interactive app prototype, check it if it works, or else leave it and make another one.
App Prototyping Design - The Fundamental Mockup Ingredient
Prototyping is a huge part of the design process wherein you and the team reviews the applicable concepts and shares feedback during the project initiation phase. By creating interactive mockups, the shortcomings in design can be sorted out, before one invests too much time in development.
Each of the tools mentioned here offer the features and flexibility for creating interactive concepts for apps.
- InVision: InVision is an efficient web-based prototyping tool that allows designers to create highly interactive mockups for web and mobile projects. While you can’t create designs directly, you can upload static designs and then transform them into interactive mockups. One can sync the designers with Adobe Photoshop and update the prototype in real-time.
This web-based tool has multiple features that facilitate your workflow for watching previews, enable version control, and sync files. There are varied transition animations and gestures that can realize your design. It also has the ability to create hover states for all types of design elements. The prototype can then be representative of final product with advanced interactivity features including drop-down menus.
- Justinmind Prototyping Tool: Here is an all-in-one prototyping tool that offers the functionality to create multiple app wireframes within the platform. One has to pick and choose design elements and then create them.
Once you are happy with a layout, you can add gestures, interactions, and transitions from the library that already includes pre-existing widgets. The widget library is personalized with elements such as buttons, checkboxes, and lists along with a whole set of parallax layouts. With multiple sources, one can ensure that your library is perfect for use.
There are multiple educational resources to get you started if you are stuck. Most videos on the site are categorized by difficulty and the community is also present to solve specific issues.
For collaboration among your own team, one will have to use a paid account. One can differentiate between edits based on location-specific comments graded by colour.
Prices range from absolutely free to $19 per user for every month.
- Marvel Prototyping Tool: Marvel is a great prototyping tool that is known to simplify its prototyping processes. With the Marvel account, one can directly work on the interface to create a prototype. One can upload image files and add transitions and gestures too.
It does not possess complete image editing capabilities but one can do basic background colour changes and access 17 different device templates for mockup creation. Also they are optimized for the different devices.
Marvel has a mobile companion app which can turn sketches into prototypes. Marvel is simple to use and learn. With a comprehensive FAQ section, video section and written tutorials, it also includes a thriving community of designers who inspire others.
The limited functionality might put off some designers, but its easy entry and companion app gets designers to prototype quickly.
- Origami Prototyping Tool: Origami is actually a prototyping tool owned by Facebook that is being consistently used to create mockups. Several popular apps including Instagram and Messenger owe its design existence due to Origami. The tool is mostly used for iOS apps since it is integrated with the powerful Quartz Composer although it supports Android prototypes too. The tool includes gestures and transition animations that are commonly used.
Additionally, Origami offers features for interactive prototyping, including Photoshop plugins and a library replete with forums, tutorials, and helpful guides. One can convert the visual design into code samples and even share animation spec snippets with others easily.
One can easily test the mobile prototypes directly with the help of its app, Origami Live. Origami’s collaborative capabilities though are limited and one cannot share prototypes with individuals operating on other devices.
- Pixate Prototyping Tool: Pixate is a prototyping platform by Google that allows web designers to test designs, animations, and wireframes for mobile devices.
One can create interface layouts in layers like the design suites and even play animations with its drag and drop function. Pixate can also map simulated interactions to animations through existing options.
Google has reduced the learning curve involved with Pixate. The documentation and tutorials offered online are good enough to help you with the first prototype.
The tool is great for individual freelancers, but with a larger team of designers, it is quite pricey. It has a $5 per user per month fee with an unlimited amount of prototype projects on the cloud that can be shared with teammates or clients.
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