11 julio, 2024

Technical product: what it is, characteristics, life cycle, examples

What is a technical product?

A technical product It is everything that arises from a technological process of production or manufacturing. During this production or manufacturing process, different technologies and technical processes are used in an orderly or sequential manner to transform raw materials or inputs into a finished product, which is aimed at satisfying some human need.

Although we usually always imagine a product as a physical object (such as a mobile phone, a pair of shoes or a T-shirt), it can also be an intangible product, such as a computer program or software, or a digital course. to learn to speak English.

Types of technical products

The technical processes by means of which physical technical products are produced can be of two types:

Artisanal technical processes

These are generally small-scale processes that use simple and sometimes rudimentary technologies for production. These processes are characterized by having low levels of automation, requiring a lot of manual labor and having limited production.

industrial technical processes

These processes are much more organized and evolved than the artisanal processes. They generally use advanced technologies consisting of large machines capable of producing large volumes of technical products on a very consistent basis. Furthermore, in many cases, especially in more modern industries, many of the steps in industrial processes are automated.

The existence of these two types of technical processes gives rise to two types of physical technical products, namely, craft products and industrialized products. Each of them has a series of particular characteristics that distinguishes it from the other, however, they all have some common characteristics that are described below.

Technical Product Features

They are produced by technical processes

As mentioned before, the main characteristic that makes an object a technical product is that it is created through a series of sequential steps called a technical process.

All technical products seek to satisfy a need

The products are created with the purpose of satisfying the needs of the people; that is to say that every product exists to fulfill a function. This function is to solve some problem (such as providing a larger and better resolution image in the case of new televisions) or to satisfy some need (such as the need for sweet desserts that are low in calories or free of gluten and refined sugar).

have materiality

This is a typical characteristic of technical products, be they tangible or intangible. A technical product is something with which we can interact and whose characteristics we can perceive with our senses. This feature is very important when deciding whether to buy a product or not.

They tend to have little customization

Most technical products, especially industrialized ones, tend to have standard or common physical and functional characteristics to all products in the same line. That is, they are not personalized for each particular user, but designed for an ideal user.

This does not turn out to be true in some particular cases of craft production, as craftsmen have much more creative freedom when designing and building custom products than a machine designed to automatically produce the same product over and over again.

Everyone has a life cycle

Regardless of whether it is a physical product or not, every technical product follows a life cycle. This cycle comprises all stages, from conception to discontinuation of a product.

Life cycle of a technical product

The life cycle of a product is an adaptation of the life cycle of living beings to the world of commercial products and services. It comprises a series of steps that are equivalent to the stages of the life of every living being, namely conception, birth, development, maturation and subsequent death.

Each of these stages is interpreted in a figurative sense. It starts with the birth of a technical product in the mind of its inventor (which is the equivalent of conception), until the withdrawal of the product from the market when the product is no longer sold (which is the equivalent of his death). ).

The different stages through which a technical product passes from its conception to its end as a collector’s item are described below.

1. Conception or generation of the idea

Conception is always the first step in the life cycle and this includes the life of technical products. At this stage, a person comes up with an idea about how to solve a problem or fill a need.

In many cases it is not a single idea, but many ideas among which the most promising is chosen.

2. Concept development

Once the idea is born and selected, the same person or a different one is dedicated to developing the concept. This involves doing research to analyze whether the idea is viable and whether or not it can be translated into a real product. This stage also implies the beginning of the design of the final product.

3. Prototyping and proof of concept

During this phase, the first prototypes of the final product are built to determine the best way to manufacture the finished product. This stage usually involves going back to the drawing board to solve problems not anticipated during the previous stage, and the stage culminates when a functional product is achieved.

4. Development of marketing strategies

This stage seeks to design the way to reach the target audience in order to present the product to them. It generally involves a process in which four elements related to the marketing of the product are defined, which are:

The completion of the product design.
Cost analysis for the development of pricing strategies.
The definition of product promotion channels.
The definition of the square in which the product will be distributed.

5. Product development

Based on the previous stages, at this point different techniques are used to define, design, develop and test the product. In some cases you start with a product with minimal features, which is improved through trial and error.

Stages 4 and 5 represent what is traditionally considered the growth of the product, while the following corresponds to its maturity.

6. Introduction to the market

This process involves testing the product with QA teams and then with small groups of real users to ensure the technical product is ready for release. After approval, the execution stage of the marketing plan begins with the start of full-tilt production, distribution, marketing and sales.

7. Decline

After being introduced to the market, sales of a product generally begin to decline for various reasons. Among these we can find the emergence of new solutions, different technologies or that the product simply goes out of style.

The decline of a product in the market usually leads to the product being discontinued and dying, thus culminating the last stage of the life cycle of a technical product.

Examples of technical products

A computer.
The new iPhone of the year.
A video beam.
Tesla’s cybertruck.
The new model of Boeing passenger aircraft.
The latest version of the Windows operating system.
The latest robot developed by Boston Dynamics.
Industrially manufactured sliced ​​bread.

References

Balle, L. (2017). What Is the Most Critical Stage in the New Product Development Process? Taken from smallbusiness.chron.com.
Maceda, AS (2013). Technical products and their functions. Taken from slideshare.net.
Mafra, E. (2021). Product life cycle: what is it and how to manage it? Taken from rockcontent.com.
Singh, S. (2021). What are the Seven Stages in the New Product Development Process? Taken from netsolutions.com.

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