Comparison of Software Development Models


Different Software Development models have different features and properties. Selection of the software development model depends on the nature of project and client. Here, I will try to give a comparison of various software development models with three parameters:


1. Contribution to Quality

2. Risks Associated

3. Context of adoption


Model Name: Waterfall Model

Contribution to Quality: Phase End Checks

Risks Associated: Expects a task to be well done in the first go

Context of adoption: When the requirements are structured and competence is high




Model Name: Software Development Lie Cycle Model (ETVX Model)

Contribution to Quality: Entry task verification exit definition and quality control through feedback.

Risks Associated: Final Product available only after the complete cycle

Context of adoption: When the requirements are quite structured, but scale is large. One may need to go back for rework if required.


Model Name: Prototype Model

Contribution to Quality: 1.  Seeing is believing. 2. Go iterative and involve customer. 3. Produce working models to give faster delivery and have concrete feedback.

Risks Associated: The  scrap may go uncontrollable

Context of adoption: When needs to try out things before making a commitment to deliver.

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Model Name: Spiral Model

Contribution to Quality: 1. Avoid scrap as well as rework – do right the first time. 2. Analyze risks before undertaking the next enhancement.

Risks Associated: Inadequate experience and subjective method of risk management

Context of adoption: When  the scale is large and planned; passed development would give confidence to move ahead or stop as suited.


Model Name: V-Model

Contribution to Quality: Plan for testing of artifacts much before their actual completion

Risks Associated: Testing techniques applied may remain subjective

Context of adoption: It is a philosophy that can be applied with any other models you choose.


Model Name: Unified Process Model

Contribution to Quality: 1. Iterative evolutionary use case centric development. 2. Defines workflows and milestones for better project management.

Risks Associated: Identification of phases needs experience.

Context of adoption: When the scale of project is large.


Model Name: Agile Models

Contribution to Quality: Anytime delivery through flexible design, limited scope and quick reviews.

Risks Associated: Flexible design techniques not well established. The designers lack an understanding of business need for agility.

Context of adoption: When business needs are dynamic and need to be fulfilled immediately.



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