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Prototyping is a key part of UI and UX design. Designers can create prototypes with both high and low fidelity, depending on their purpose. Thus, prototypes provide an opportunity to test a feature, application or website. Their main purpose is to test ideas before they are fully developed and to improve the user experience.
There are many ways to demonstrate design interaction with the numerous prototyping tools that are available to designers.
We’ll take a look at the top 10 latest tools that will help UX/UI developers create an interactive model for product design and concept.
Mockplus RP is a fast and free online prototyping tool that makes your ideas fly. You can absolutely create from sketches, diagrams, wireframes to hi-fi prototypes, and test your design ideas early on, with all level of visual designs are created in one tool to share ideas with stakeholders, clients, and other peers, perfectly achieving your design goals at different phases.
It also has a complete set of popular web and mobile app artboard and frame options, even custom ones, matches all your needs, allowing you to quickly preview and test your UI/UX visions like the real deal on your mobile, laptop and tablet.
Adobe XD is one of the most popular tools among UI/UX designers. This program functions as a universal platform for creating web frames, website design, mobile applications, voice interfaces, etc. Adobe XD allows teams to work collectively across platforms in real time, receiving valuable comments and feedback directly from clients.
Figma provides an easy-to-use drag-and-drop editor to create wireframes and practical prototypes. The program also has many elements for animating prototypes.
Most designers are already familiar with this UI tool. Although Figma is considered a UX design program, it also has rapid prototyping software. Additional features include plugins such as Figmotion and Autoflow, as well as Arc Tool and Vector Networks.
Webflow is gaining popularity today as it speeds up the work of developers by offering semantic code and designers. Essentially, the platform helps in prototyping while creating a live site. Webflow is a well-known prototyping method for developing responsive, code-free websites. Designers can use built-in sophisticated features for high-fidelity designs that Webflow can turn into a production-ready site at the click of a button.
Sketch is one of the most widely used user interface design and prototyping software by millions of programmers around the world. It is one of the best modern applications for developing all forms of user interface. The platform resembles a sophisticated and widely supported version of Figma. However, the application is only available for iOS.
It is a vector platform with an elegant graphical interface that allows you to manage style, scaling and design templates. In addition, Sketch has a wide range of borders, gradient fills, blending modes, etc. The program supports the entire production process in which designers develop high-quality projects.
InVision is another web application that is focused on architecture. It offers all the necessary materials to move from wireframing to UI design, as well as useful methods for better teamwork and prototyping.
InVision is one of the largest and most popular prototyping tools used by designers and leading enterprises today. The platform supports real-time design changes and quickly gathers feedback from teams, allowing the developer to organize their workflow. This approach simplifies design work.
Axure RP combines powerful design tools, SVG import, Sketch and Adobe XD integration with world-class prototyping. You can easily share Axure RP prototypes and Adobe XD artboards, quickly draw and collect input on top of screens, validate layout, retrieve CSS snippets and upload assets, and convert static images to dynamic prototypes in Axure Cloud.
The platform also facilitates comprehensive documentation, automated redlines, and handoffs to developers without the need to write any code.
Framer is known for its versatility, versatile interface, functional design, and clear templates. This tool extends the design dynamics from the drag-and-drop method, as this platform is code-based and uses CoffeeScript for prototyping.
The disadvantage of this tool is a complicated interface and workflow, so developers and designers have to spend a lot of time studying it.
Origami Studio is a macOS application created by Facebook. There is also a mobile app analogue that allows you to view prototypes on a real device.
Facebook uses this prototyping tool on a daily basis. In 2013, Origami Studio became available to the whole world. At first it worked with Quartz Composer, but it’s no secret that this part of the Xcode environment is not the best way to prototype. Therefore, last year Facebook provided Origami Studio, a preliminary prototype tool that works with their own environment. Its performance has improved significantly with this move, but unfortunately it is still only available for Mac users.
Marvel calls itself a “design platform for digital products”. Although this statement is not completely true, the program is great for prototyping mobile and digital applications.
Marvel has all the resources available to develop all kinds of mobile and web interfaces – from concepts to templates. The platform also facilitates gesture interaction to create animated applications for smartphones.
Justinmind is a prototyping tool that allows designers to focus on user experience. The platform is ideal for creating wireframes and responsive prototyping that are compatible with different screen resolutions. Designers should properly use the full set of templates and UI libraries to create highly accurate prototypes. Moreover, JustInMind helps to work with forms and data lists without requiring the ability to write code.
Other ways of prototyping:
Below are a few more platforms that were not included in the list of the best tools for prototyping.
1. UXPin combines design, prototyping and collaboration in one place on Windows, Mac or any browser.
2. Blocs provides the ability to add a lot of interesting scrolling effects and animations to any part of responsive sites without the need to write code.
3. Principle allows you to develop animated and interactive interfaces through the flow of a multi-screen application or new interactions and animations.
4. Omnigraffle provides tools for user interface mockups that allow you to build diagrams and create prototypes, as well as design tools for professionals focused on work organization and visual interaction.
5. Mockflow – simple software for developing wireframes and collaborating on UI design by quickly creating sketches of interface layouts.
6. Slickplan is a web prototyping system that allows you to easily define folders, pages and link structures using a drag-and-drop interface.
7. Proto allows you to create fully interactive, high-fidelity prototypes.
8. Moqups is an optimized web application that helps you create wireframes, mockups, diagrams and prototypes in real time.
9. iPlotz provides the development of clickable navigation layouts and wireframes for prototyping websites and software applications. In addition, you can discuss your creations with other users.
10. Gliffy – diagramming and drawing software that allows you to drag and drop shapes or use templates and themes for prototyping.
11. HotGloo – UI program for creating wireframes and prototyping. It is used to develop interfaces for digital, mobile and portable devices.
12. Mockingbird – UI tools for creating mockups using drag-and-drop elements on the page with the ability to resize.
13. Protoshare – a collaborative prototyping tool that helps teams visualize requirements through website wireframes, interactive software and mobile prototypes.
14. Balsamiq – software for developing low-fidelity wireframes with a large number of online courses and resources for learning warframing and user interface design.
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