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4 Steps to Successfully Manufacture New Consumer Electronics

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How can you bring a new consumer electronic product to life? It starts by recognizing a consumer need and developing a possible solution to that need. With the idea of a new product in mind, it’s then a matter of figuring out how to manufacture it with adequate quality and profitability.

Step 1: Assemble a Prototype

When you’re developing a new electronic product, you must first find out if you can build what you have in mind. That means developing a proof-of-concept prototype.

This initial prototype is designed purely to see what your product will look like, how it will work, and whether it appeals to your target audience. It likely won’t have the same carefully sourced internals as your final product—it may look quite rough and be less than fully functional. Use this prototype to:

  • Test your initial ideas
  • Ensure operability
  • Build an outline for the bill of materials (BOM)
  • Develop packaging ideas

Step 2: Optimize PCB and Packaging Layout

After you’ve established proof of concept with a successful prototype, it’s time to turn this initial effort into a design for manufacturing. This means optimizing the internal electronics and external packaging to develop a preliminary production design. You need to evaluate several key factors, including:

  • Materials availability and cost
  • Assembly cost
  • Heat profile
  • Size
  • Functionality

You’ll also need to consider how easily and cheaply the product can be manufactured, which will require test runs on a manufacturing line.

Step 3: Test, Test, and Test Some More

Once you’ve optimized your product design, you need to test how it works in the real world—and then optimize it some more. You need to perform:

  • Functional testing, to ensure it performs as designed
  • Lifestyle testing, for fit and function
  • Appearance testing, for customer appeal
  • Durability testing, to make sure it holds up in real-world conditions

You should also perform lifetime testing, which you do by simulating performance in specific conditions based on applicable laws and applications. If some part of the product doesn’t hold up under testing, then it’s time for a little redesign. It’s all about testing and tweaking and redesigning as necessary until you get a product that you’re confident to release.

Step 4: Ensure Final Manufacturability

The final step in creating a new consumer electronic product is to make sure it can be manufactured to your quality and cost expectations. That means conducting volume runs, adjusting the BOM, and being flexible based on component availability. If you do all the necessary work, you’ll have drop-ship success!

Choose Sonic When You’re Creating Your New Consumer Electronic Product

When you need a PCB designed for manufacturing a new consumer electronic product, turn to Sonic Manufacturing Technologies. We have more than 25 years of experience designing, manufacturing, and assembling PCBs and can help you create the ideal product that you have in mind.

Contact Sonic Manufacturing Technologies online or at (510) 580-8500 or for all your PCB manufacturing needs.