A minimum viable product (MVP) is a software development technique. This is where a new product or website is developed with sufficient features to satisfy the early adopters and early requirements. The final, complete set of features is then designed and developed after considering feedback from the product’s initial users. Consider it as a product built with a minimum feature set. So, should we be developing the features that the customers are asking for as the minimal requirements? Should we just be doing the bare minimum or should we be going above and beyond to satisfy a larger audience?
The idea of an MVP is to create bare bones features and selling the vision behind it. Is it enough anymore to just do the minimum all the time or do you need to aim higher? In software development, times are changing. In my opinion, while there is a time and a place for MVPs and that is if you’re just trying to satisfy a list of simple requirements. In most instances, you should be doing more.
An explanation from Carlos Beneyto on Medium:
“The technological evolution is taking giant steps and consumers are also advancing and moving forward […] What is the problem with all this? Users are accustomed to a minimum of quality, and they expect that of all new products. What does it mean? That all users expect a new social application [for instance] to share the activity of that application (whatever it may be) with other social networks. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp, etc… it’s that simple. If our product does not have such a simple feature, people will automatically believe that it is a bad quality product and they will not take it seriously. It is not what they expect.”
As a whole, the world of technology has changed, grown, and exploded. People are now accustomed to a minimum standard. If a new product doesn’t have that basic functionality already, in addition to the requirements you are trying to satisfy, then it’s going to be viewed automatically as an inferior product. So, the question remains. Do you develop an MVP or not? In most cases? I would argue not to. You have to think ahead to what the larger audience will need and more importantly what they will already expect.
You have to be able to offer more. The end user is now a thousand times over more technologically savvy than they used to be. You have to be able to bring features that are expected to the table as well as speed and design. You are being faced with end customers who now have a notion of how these products, programs or applications should run or how they should look at a minimum level. This is what you’re competing with.
What is your opinion on creating an MVP vs creating a product that satisfies a larger audience? Are all the extra features necessary right out of the gate or is it excessive and a waste of time? What are your thoughts? Comment below!