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Product Design & Development Services

e-con provides end to end product development services in the embedded design. This is also called as concept to product in the embedded industry. Customers approach e-con with a concept and e-con helps them to achieve the final designed product. The Electronic Product design involves the following stages as mentioned below. The diagram below illustrates the product development cycle.

Engineering product design services

Electronic Product Design Cycle

"We were looking for a single vendor with both Hardware & Software expertise that could help us with our quick prototyping efforts – and e-con Systems fit the bill perfectly. The e-con team was knowledgeable, efficient and always communicated in a timely manner. Our project requirements were constantly evolving, and even in this fluid environment e-con was able to meet their deliverables. We thoroughly enjoyed working with the e-con team and hope we can use their services again in the future"

Jeff,

Sr. Program Manager,

Nokia.

Steps involved in Product Development and Design Services

[+] Requirements gathering

In this stage, the requirements are collected in the form of use cases for the product. Most of the customers provide the product design with use cases for the various uses the product is supposed to perform. These use cases are further ranked in priority. As an example for a handheld point of sale the use cases could be like this. Use cases have to cover many classifications like user interface, ergonomics, certifications, costing, timelines etc.

Use Case

2.3.4

2.3.5

2.3.6

2.3.7

Classification

User Interface

User Interface

Ergonomics

Ergonomics

Priority

Medium

Medium

Medium

High

Purpose

POS Application launch within 8s after switch on

Our company logo launches after switch on

Should not weigh more than 0.5kgs

Should be suitable to both left and right handers

In some cases, customers do not provide these use cases. e-con systems team discusses with the customer to derive these use cases. Though this takes some time, it is important to have this properly done. e-con would be happy to assist customers for preparing the use cases document for their product. For a sample use cases spec for a handheld point of sale, please write to sales@e-consystems.com

[+] Feasibility

The next stage in the electronic product design is the feasibility stage. The gathered requirements are converted in to the format so that the Engineering team can work on the feasibility part. In this stage, e-con would analyse the following things for the customer

bullatIs the product technically feasible?

bullatIs the OS chosen, the right OS for the application?

bullatCan the timelines be met with the deliverables proposed?

bullatIs the costing enough for the project?

bullatIs there any third party involvement in the project that has to be analyzed?

[+] Project information report

Based on the feasibility, a project information report is submitted. The project information report contains the schedule, risk factors and the costing involved. A block diagram of the final product with the various components is presented. At this stage a Class A BOM of the final product to be designed is provided to the customer. This BOM is not 100% accurate but is within 80-120% of the final BOM. This gives the customer an idea of what would be the cost of the product when they go in for a mass manufacturing at 1K or 10K volumes. For a sample PIR which we submit to our customers, please write to sales@e-consystems.com

[+] Acceptance test plan

We enter the design stage here. Here based on the use cases document initially presented, a detailed product design test cases is drafted. This also takes in to account the places where the device is typically used. For eg. a remote monitoring unit might be in a warehouse or in a cell phone tower and it needs to be tested for rugged field conditions. Every product designed will include test cases for the field test that will be for a duration of a minimum of 4 weeks. Test cases will involve hardware, software, vibration testing, drop testing, tumble testing and field testing. Test plans would also take in to account of the ESD certifications and FCC/CE certifications. An example of a test case for a handheld POS could be something like this

Test Case

1.1.2

2.1.2

Classification

Field Test

Ergonomics

Purpose

GPRS tested at locations where the connections are bad and works OK

POS is dropped at 3ft height and tested for 24 hours and works OK

[+] Engineering design

In this design engineering stage, all the components for the hardware are finalized. The mechanicals are also finalized. Typically, e-con presents the customer with a 2D/3D mechanical design model. The tools that are used are here are edrawings. Some customers prefer to do the mechanicals themselves and would want e-con to design the product accordingly as per the spec. The 3D diagrams are important to get the volumetric specification of the product especially when there are multiple PCBs involved. The exact BOM is also finalized. At this stage the following things are completed.

bullatMechanical 2D/3D diagrams

bullatBOM - 1K or 10K volumes

bullatFunctional specification of the final product

bullatDesign analysis - Detailed hardware design analysis including timing analysis for

bullatinterfacing is done at this stage. Also software SDD is completed

[+] Hardware/Software Implementation

We enter the implementation stage here having crossed the design stage. While the hardware team starts designing the product, the software team starts working on reference platforms on the chosen processor. Typical mobile processors e-con has worked in the past are DM3730,PXA270, PXA300, PXA320, OMAP35x, AM/DM37x, i.Mx27 and i.Mx31. If the processor happens to be one of these processors e-con has got prior design experience and hence the implementation would be much faster. If the customer chooses DM3730 computer on module e-con has its Almach development board

For most of the peripherals e-con has already a tested add on solution. Suppose, the design needs GPRS or GPS, e-con has its GPRS/GPS solution which is tested and has got drivers and application ready. These are some solutions where e-con has already got building blocks and the implementation phase can be really quick. For these hardware interfaces, e-con has the complete solution for hardware and software. These include add on modules, Windows CE BSP and Linux BSP. They are

bullatGPRS/GPS solution

bullatCamera solutions for

bullatOMAP35x / OMAP4 Processors

bullatGumstix®'s OVERO® COMs

bullatDaVinci™ / Sitara™ Processors

bullati.MX6 Processors

bullatPXA270/PXA300 Processors

bullatUSB

bullatDaVinci™ / Sitara™ Processors

bullatWi-Fi & Bluetooth

bullatThermal Printer

bullatNFC

bullatContact smart card reader - ISO 7816

bullatContactless smart card reader - ISO 14443

[+] Prototyping

This is the final stage in the product design implementation. Typically, 5 prototypes of the final product is done and this is called as Beta release. The 5 prototypes are analyzed for any hardware issues, mechanical issues and overheads and an alpha release is planned. In case of the handheld POS, some of the issues can be like the printer cutter does not align with the outer enclosure and has to be aligned etc. Typical alpha release numbers are 10-20. With this the implementation phase is completed.

[+] Testing

The acceptance test plan is used and all the test cases mentioned in the acceptance test plan is carried out. This also includes field testing test cases. If there are any changes after field testing, then one more revision of the product is done.

[+] Certification

The product is taken for certifications. Typical certifications are for ESD and FCC/CE certifications. Typically, certifications require changes in the mechanical enclosure and the mechanical design can go in for at least 1 revision.

[+] Production setup

The product is taken for certifications. Typical certifications are for ESD and FCC/CE certifications. Typically, certifications require changes in the mechanical enclosure and the mechanical design can go in for at least 1 revision.

Time taken for developing a product

Typical product development cycle extends from 6 months to 1 year. This timeline covers from concept to getting into production. These are the timelines spent on each stage.

Stage

Requirements gathering, feasibility, project information report

Acceptance test plan, Engineering design

Hardware/software Implementation, Prototyping

Testing, certification and Production setup

% Of the total timeline

10%

25%

25%

40%

Know more about Why Productized Services or If you have any query on product design services, please write to sales@e-consystems.com