One of the most frequent questions we hear from entrepreneurs is about the design cycle and how long it will take to develop an idea into a real product or product prototype. Of course that answer totally depends on the complexity of the product, but by breaking the process down, there are solid ways of estimating what will happen and when.
The cycle consists of three big loops — design, engineering, and production. The goal is to move gracefully from loop to loop, but you often need to run a loop more than once to get it right. Generally speaking, it’s hard to develop a new product in less than six months. Nine to fifteen months is common, and many products take a lot longer.
(Read the rest of JD’s article at Entrepreneur.com.)