POP is an iOS prototyping app made simple (hands-on)
Application prototyping is a fairly standard part of the app development lifecycle. It’s where an idea usually starts blossoming into a functional and interactive app for end-users. While plenty of professional grade alternatives are in the market, the developers of POP aim towards simplicity. They offer a free iOS app that allows you to use your rough drawings in order to create a presentable prototype. The app is very straightforward, and, although it has limited functionality, it managed to surprise us with its ease of use and results.
We decided that the best way to evaluate the usability of the app was to create our own prototype ‘The Verge’ mobile app. POP allows you to shoot a set of photos — or use existing images — and create hot spots where buttons are supposed to be, thus linking the images together. As soon as you’re done linking your assets together, a tap of the ‘play’ button sets the prototype app active and in full screen view. The app developer also provides a backend service for social sharing and online presentation of the prototype. The Verge prototype app we cobbled together almost feels like a regular iOS app. These rough mock-ups can be very helpful during the early stages of development; it puts the focus back on paper where usually most ideas begin taking shape. The only real let-down is the lack of an iPad version of the app, but nevertheless this is a free app providing more than enough to earn a place in any app developer’s toolbox.