When working with Mindtribe, clients frequently ask us how to handle manufacturing for their products. Mindtribe does not own or operate any factories, so we partner with manufacturers to physically build the products we design. Manufacturing is its own specialty with a significant body of knowledge surrounding it, so one blog post cannot do justice to all the options available. However, we have done a substantial amount of work on connected devices and consumer electronics, and within that industry the landscape of manufacturers is described in some common ways. The goal of this post is to orient you to that landscape as a first step in determining a manufacturing strategy.
The alphabet soup of players
There are broadly four types of companies that we work with to manufacture a product: CMs (contract manufacturers): Contract manufacturers are in the business of manufacturing products for other people.