The Main Steps in the Embedded Software Development Cycle


If you want to get a successful product, a properly-defined embedded system development process is a must. A development team must plan everything ahead to get a powerful product that will undoubtedly meet the requirements of your client. In this post, we’ll take a closer look at this theme and define the key stages of the embedded product development cycle. If you are going to invest in building your own embedded product, this information might come in handy!

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At this stage, a development team usually discusses the main idea with stakeholders and decides if this idea is worth investment. What do developers do at this stage? They usually do comprehensive online research, check marketing statistics, customers’ feedback, prospects, etc. They also have to discuss the main problems that have to be solved with this software, features that have to be added, and the main goal of this software. On top of that, the ultimate price of the final product must also be discussed. A customer wants to know how much they wish to invest in solving a certain problem with the help of the new embedded software.

Technical Specification

Having a clear technical specification of your future product is a must. If you miss this stage, it’s a huge waste of time and money. The main goal of product spec is to cover such things as the overriding objective of this product, main features, manufacturing needs, environmental conditions, etc. A lot depends on the specifics of a certain product.

Design Your Solution

The main goal of this stage is to decide how your design will look like, what kind of strategies you are going to use to build this particular product, wired or wireless connection is needed, what type of power supply you will use, and how your firmware design will look like. It’s a very important stage that simply can’t be missed.

Choose the Right Components

Your next stage is choosing the right components to finish your design. For example, a software engineer must choose a power supply type needed, a linear regulator, or other power chips. Choosing the right hardware components is a critical task because the success of your future product depends on choosing the right electronic components.

Make a Test Plan

The main goal of hardware and software testing is to check the reliability of your future product. Remember that your customers pay for a working software product. If it doesn’t comply with their demands, they will go to your competitors.

When building an embedded product, you need to define your testing plan that normally should cover the following items:

  • Software design validation;
  • Hardware design validation;
  • Product testing.

If you build a test plan before the implementation of your design, it will be easy to incorporate changes (if necessary).

Prototype Development

If you aren’t sure that the chosen design perfectly suits the needs of this product, it would be more effective if you create a prototype. It’s a good solution for those who want to save time, money, and effort.

Field Trials

Do you know what challenge engineers frequently face? It’s a huge disappointment for them to understand that their product properly works in the lab but doesn’t work in the field. Field and lab conditions are absolutely different. Therefore, engineers must think carefully about this issue and check their product thoroughly in all the conditions.

User experience also matters. Software developers need to check the product in the lab and field conditions, and also think of how users will handle their product. For instance, if the work of your product depends on the wireless connection, it goes without saying that the signal strength is contingent on the coverage area. It is really hard to replicate such conditions in the lab. Therefore, a field test is mandatory!

After all these stages, engineers usually incorporate the final improvements and launch the product! Professional software developers usually follow these directions when building embedded software. If you have a business idea, based on embedded systems, you have to make sure that you are dealing with experts in this niche.


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