June 26, 2014

Marvel – Turn Sketches Into Prototypes

Marvel is a free tool that turns sketches, wireframes, PSDs and designs stored in Dropbox into interactive mobile and web prototypes. By connecting their Marvel accounts to Dropbox, users can keep their prototypes updated and in-sync regardless of whether they make any changes in the future.

To create your first prototype, login with Dropbox over SSL and extract the images you’d like to use. Link each of your static screens together using hotspots. You can also add animations, and toggle through screens. Assuming you’re designing a prototype for the iPhone, Marvel will bring up a preview frame that show exactly what your design will look like once it’s fully implemented. You can even create app icons to install on the home screen of your device. Marvel provides you with a unique URL for each prototype you create, which you can then share with clients or colleagues. This URL stays the same regardless of how many changes you make to your prototype.

The real innovation behind Marvel has to do with its connection to Dropbox. Marvel never edits or modifies any files in Dropbox. Instead, the web-based application simply extracts images. Files are then kept up-to-date automatically, which means users never have to re-upload their prototypes once they’ve started a new project.

Practical Uses:

  • Turn static images into interactive prototypes
  • Quickly send prototypes to clients or colleagues
  • Add animations to your mobile app prototypes
  • Create an app icon for your iPhone prototype

Insider Tips:

  • App icons will update automatically whenever you make changes to a file
  • Marvel is fully compatible with Safari and Chrome
  • Email, SMS, or download any project
  • Users don’t need Dropbox installed to use Marvel

What we liked:

  • Users can scroll up or down their prototypes just as if they’d built a real app
  • Prototypes update automatically any time a user makes a change to a design
  • Designers can test new ideas before committing the resources to fully developing them
  • Marvel never edits or modifies any files in Dropbox

What we didn’t like:

  • Marvel doesn’t support Sketch, Fireworks or Illustrator files
  • Marvel is still working on full support for Firefox


Company Info:

  • Launched: 2013 (Beta)
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: London, England
  • Founded by: Murat Mutlu, Jonathan Siao, and Brendan Moore
  • Web site:


  • Free

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