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PoC vs MVP: What’s the Difference?

606 Views | 1 min | Published On: February 24, 2023 Last Updated: November 22, 2023

Time and again, businesses and professionals are thrown off by PoC and MVP. POC vs MVP is a usual topic in the software development industry. However, not everyone is well-versed in the differences between the two.

In this blog post, we will be discussing the two terms – proof of concept and minimum viable product – and comparing them. Further, we will tell you when to choose MVP over PoC and vice-versa. Let’s start with the definitions of MVP and PoC.

What is Proof of Concept?

It is a document that shows how developing a solution (a website or a mobile app) is practically possible for solving a particular problem. A PoC document allows developers and business developers to find and test the technical aspects of a business solution.

PoC Steps

A proof-of-concept helps in developing a minimum viable product as well as creating a technical prototype. Unlike the two, however, it has no commercial value. It is a tool purely for internal use by the business.

What is Minimum Viable Product?

An MVP or minimum viable product is a bare-bones avatar of a business product or service. It facilitates comprehensive product development and offers businesses a reliable way to collect invaluable data for improving their offerings. A minimum viable product is also often used to develop an MMP or minimum marketable product.

MVP Steps

By building an MVP, a business can know whether its product meets user requirements and has a demand in the market. It also helps to collect real, actionable user feedback to further refine the product over the next development sprints.

PoC vs MVP

Both PoC and MVP are different but interrelated concepts. Here, we will pitch them one by one on the basis of various parameters. Let us start the PoC vs MVP debate beyond the basics:

1.Audience

An MVP is meant to attract early adopters and investors. Contrary to this, developers and R&D professionals use a proof-of-concept document to know how the idea will come to fruition. In modern Agile workplace environments, a PoC document is used to develop a minimum viable product.

2.Development Time

PoC can take a few days to a couple of weeks to complete. Comparatively, a minimum viable product demands a few months to several months. A prototype can be completed within a time span of a few weeks to a few months.

Product Development Process

3.Investment Required

A PoC document can be prepared in a fraction of the budget required for developing an MVP. That’s because it’s only a tool for feasibility study while a minimum viable product is an actual product with nothing extra.

4.Revenue

PoC is not for sale. It isn’t available to customers, clients, or consumers. It is strictly for internal use. An MVP, however, can generate revenue from users and investment from potential investors and backers by demonstrating the potential of the business solution.

5.Risk Addressal

Both PoC and MVP help to mitigate risk. While a proof-of-concept document helps to minimise technical risks, a minimum viable product is helpful to avoid developing a product with little to no market demand.

By gaining user feedback, a business solution can be tweaked in subsequent development rounds to incorporate features that the user wants.

6.Type

While a minimum viable product is an actual product, a proof-of-concept is just a document that shows the viability of a business idea.

A PoC helps to assess the technical feasibility of a business idea. An MVP, on the other hand, helps to validate a business idea and craft a market-fit product based on user feedback.

7.Use

Since both PoC and MVP are different, they are also used differently in software development. A proof-of-concept helps to determine the technical aspects of a business idea as well as to test them. A minimum viable product, however, helps to develop a market-fit product based on user feedback and attract investors.

As we know that software development is a multi-stage process, the end product of one stage comes useful in the other. A proof-of-concept helps to realise MVP software development and build a technical prototype, and a minimum viable product helps in full-fledged product development.

MVP vs PoC: A Comparison Table

MVP vs PoC: A Comparison Table
Comparison parameter PoC MVP
Introduced by Unknown (1967), Bruce Carston (1989) Nick Swinmurn (1999), Frank Robinson (2001)
For Developers, BDEs, and R&D professionals Early adopters and investors
Development time taken A few days to a couple of weeks A few months to several months
Investment required A few hundred dollars A few thousand dollars to several thousand dollars
Commerciality None Revenue (from users) and investment (from investors)
Reduces the risk of Technical errors Product failure
Type Document A working product with only the most essential features
Used for
  • Determine and test the technical aspects of a business solution
  • MVP development
  • Building a technical prototype
  • Attract investors
  • Build a rounded final product
  • Develop a market-fit product
  • Generate revenue

PoC vs MVP vs Prototype

PoC and MVP are often confused with one another and with a prototype. The trio are similar but not the same. To sum up, this is the difference between PoC, MVP, and a prototype:

poc vs prototype vs mvp

A prototype helps to reduce the risk of user dissatisfaction. It is also useful for developing a minimum viable product or minimum marketable product. Although it is not available for end users, a prototype is used by businesses to attract investment.

You can consult an experienced mobile app developer like Apptunix to get guidance on developing a PoC, MVP, or prototype for your business solution.

When to Choose MVP or PoC?

Finally, it’s time to decide which one you should choose. Each of them has a different role to play in software development. Hence, each one of them is apt for different scenarios. Use MVP when you want to:

  • Attract investors.
  • Collect user feedback.
  • Develop a minimum marketable product.
  • Start generating revenue from your business idea.
  • Want to check whether your business idea has commerciality.

Choose PoC while you need to:

  • Build a technical prototype.
  • Create an MVP.
  • Determine and test the technicalities of your business idea.

Conclusion

Both PoC and MVP are important for software development. Each of them serves a specific purpose in the process of developing a suitable product to meet market demands.

You need a proof-of-concept document to check whether your business solution is possible or not. Moreover, it lets you know the technical nuisances associated with the product.

Creating an MVP allows you to start selling your product to the users and also to collect user feedback to improve the product and make it a perfect fit for market requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

Q 1.What is a Minimum Viable Product?

An MVP is a rendition of a business product that has only the most essential features. It helps to develop a market-suitable product.

Q 2.What is a Proof-of-Concept document?

It is a technical feasibility study that helps developers and business analysts to check the feasibility of a business solution.

Q 3.Is MVP an Agile term?

Yes, MVP is a common term in Agile. It helps businesses to develop a more rounded final product or a minimum marketable product. A minimum viable product can be used for both revenue generation and attracting investment.

Q 4.What is the difference between MVP and MMP?

MMP is the outcome of the next step in the product development process after developing a minimum viable product. A minimum marketable product is the finalised version of an MVP that takes user feedback into account.

Q 5.Is POC the same as prototype?

A proof-of-concept document helps to assess the technical aspects of a business idea, whereas a prototype facilitates testing the look and feel of a business idea.

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