Selecting a Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) methodology can be a challenging task for the organizations and software engineers. What actually makes it challenging is the fact that only a few software development company in Bangalore know what are the criteria to be borne in mind while selecting a methodology to add value to a particular organization.

Various models have been developed so far through SDLC evolution that casts a variety in development expectations and requirements that are appropriate for different businesses. Ultimately, it’s all about determining what will suit best to your company culture. Before selecting a framework for a given SDLC methodology, there is a need to define the different types as well as analyze the advantages and disadvantages of those models. 

SDLC Models- what are they?

To ensure that the project meets all of its deadlines while staying right within budget, and delivering high-quality work can be daunting.  But there are some models to help make this process easier as compared to others. These are known as Software Development Life Cycle Models or SDLC Models. The SDLC model can be used in project management to define the various stages of software development.

It provides a detailed plan that describes how to develop, as well as maintain, replace, and alter or improve a specific software. An SDLC model can literally be fruitful for your project.  However, a proper model should be adopted keeping in mind the budget requirements, time constraints and/or quality expectations from stakeholders. 

Therefore, it is transparent from the above that the life cycle model enables defining a methodology for enhancing the software quality and also the software development in India as a whole.

In today’s world, there are approximately over 50 different models for software development to choose from. And each one has its own pros and cons depending on the requirements of a given project or team. After spending a successful decade in this industry, we have gone through and recommend the following 8 most popular software development life cycle models along with their core features so that it can be beneficial for you to learn about the basic stages of software development. 

Software development lifecycle

Fundamental stages of SDLC 

Stage 1: Proper Planning and Analysis

Each software development life cycle model commences with an analysis in which the process stakeholders are able to discuss the requirements for the final product. The ultimate goal of this stage remains to define the system requirements in detail. Furthermore, it is necessary to ensure that all process participants comprehend the tasks appropriately as well as how each of the requirements can be implemented.

Stage 2: Crafting the Project Architecture

Developers usually prefer to design the architecture during this second phase of the software development life cycle when all the technical questions that are probably to arise during this stage have already been discussed by all stakeholders, including the customer.

Stage 3: Onset of Development and Programming

Following approval of the needs and requirements, the process goes for the next stage of actual development. Programmers begin writing source code and the system administrators initiate checking for configuring the software environment. The front-end programmers are required to create the program’s user interface as well as the logic in this stage to communicate with the server.

Stage 4: Testing of the codes

Debugging takes place during the testing phase. All code flaws discovered so far during development are identified, properly documented and returned to the developers for resolution and the software workflow as well is stabilized.

Stage 5: Deployment of the software

When the program is finally complete and free from critical flaws, it is time to make corrections. The testing procedure is rigorously repeated until all issues have been resolved. The tech support team joins at this stage to note the user feedback, as well as for providing consultation and support to users after the new program version is released. This phase encompasses updating selected components ensuring that the software is up to date and secure.

An overview of SDLC Models

1. The Waterfall Model

 This model represents a method of software development that can move in an orderly cascade, with each stage having more concrete deliverables and being properly documented, with the next stage requiring an urge of completion before starting on it. Therefore, as per this model, the software requirements are difficult to be re-evaluated at later stages of development. 


There is apparently no way to see or test the software as well until the final development stage is completed, thereby resulting in high project risks and unpredictable project outcomes which makes testing to be frequently rushed, and errors to be more costly to correct.

Use Cases

  • However, it is better for small or medium-sized projects that stand with well-defined, unchanging requirements.
  • It also suits projects that use a well-known technology stack and tools.

2. The Validation and Verification Model

The Validation and Verification Model or V-Model is a project management model that enables rendering a high-quality work, but at the same time it makes it very costly and time-consuming too. The development phase of this methodology as well has its own set of limitations. The development mistakes are not easy to identify. 

Verification and validation model

Use Cases: It is suitable for Projects in which failures and downtime are considered acceptable.

3. The Incremental and Iterative Model

The software development process in the incremental model is similar to building a Lego structure where each iteration of work can be divided into smaller chunks with new modules being added at each step without altering the previous ones. Software development can be done either in a parallel or in a sequential manner. Parallel development is a bit quick and inexpensive, whereas sequential development takes more time and is costly too.

In the iterative model also the software transforms and can be grown in subsequent iterations along with the number of these iterations gradually adding up to previous ones. But the basic design here remains unchanged throughout the process. The project is delivered in a sequential manner with not much need for specification from the beginning as any alterations if required can be made during the development stages.

Use Cases: It is beneficial for Large, project-critical enterprise applications that are made up of loosely coupled components.

4. Spiral Model

To use the Spiral Model, it requires hiring experts in risk evaluation. The most essential activities in this cycle include planning, risk analysis, prototype creation keeping in mind customer feedback during review of the previous tasks completed on the project. 

This model repeats itself as an extension as on how long your project will take and here each cycle has feedback from customers that enables them to present their inputs into the review process so that they can explore critical aspects while still providing their experiences with what otherwise would be needed to rectify and improve upon any flaws found within prototypes as well as products.

Use Cases: This model goes with projects that are large and complex. It also proves to be advantageous for the introduction of a new service or product, research and development activities.

5. The Rational Unified Process Model

This process primarily focuses on requirements gathering, prototyping, and ultimately defining quality standards with an aim to produce high-quality software. This process ensures good design, an organized process along with an increased productivity in software development.

Use Cases: This model is mainly suitable for large and high-risk projects, especially use-case-based development. 

6.  The Agile Group models

The Agile umbrella might be small yet useful. It basically refers to a group of models that provide fast and effective solutions for the modern business world, primarily focusing on customer feedback, and strong communication with stakeholders as well as considering iterative development cycles with an aim to produce quality solutions in weeks. They lay more emphasis on detailed documentation than testing.

As there remains no documented software description, identifying problems when maintenance is actually required takes longer time. However, these programs are constantly updated, evolved, and improved. Also, thinking of software development, it is better to outsource the work as it actually proves to be more convenient and cost-effective. 

Agile software development also requires a great amount of contribution from all the parties involved which further stresses on the use of an experienced software partner who can understand your requirements and with whom you can successfully collaborate to develop a customized software solution based on your needs. 

Use Cases

  • It is beneficial for startup initiatives that require quick feedback from end-users.
  • Middle-sized projects in which business requirements are not as transparent.
  •  Large projects under this model can be broken down into small functional parts and thereby developed incrementally over each iteration.

7.  The Scrum Process Model

The scrum process refers to a software development process which focuses on short bursts of work accomplished at any given time to render results as quickly as those similar to the agile process models. 

The main benefit that it provides for companies is the ability to foresee the progress because sprints are shorter here than other processes, which means that one can see the process progress in comparatively a shorter time frame.

8. The Extreme Programming Model

The extreme programming process indicates to a software development process that takes into consideration the use of unit tests and other advanced techniques to ensure premium-quality standards in both software design and implementation. 

The main advantage this process provides for companies is an increased code reliability as it enables process testing and code reviews that can be done at every stage of the process.

summarization in charts

Using the above data as groundwork, we tried to compare the different models in terms of the core features – time, cost, and quality. 

Factors Waterfall V-Shaped Evolutionary Prototyping Spiral Iterative and Incremental Agile
Unclear User Requirement Poor Poor Good Excellent Good Excellent
Unfamiliar Technology Poor Poor Excellent Excellent Good Poor
Complex System Good Good Excellent Excellent Good Poor
Reliable system Good Good Poor Excellent Good Good
Short Time Schedule Poor Poor Good Poor Excellent Excellent
Strong Project Management Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Cost limitation Poor Poor Poor Poor Excellent Excellent
Visibility of Stakeholders Good Good Excellent Excellent Good Excellent
Skills limitation Good Good Poor Poor Good Poor
Documentation Excellent Excellent Good Good Excellent Poor
Component reusability Excellent Excellent Poor Poor Excellent Poor

Choosing the right SDLC Model? Know a few of the selection criteria that you should consider to select a SDLC:

  • Is it suitable as per the size of your team and their skills?
  • Is the SDLC competent for the selected technology to be used for implementing the solution?
  • Is it capable of justifying client and stakeholders concerns and priorities?
  • Is it appropriate in terms of the geographical situation (distributed team)?
  • Is the SDLC suitable for the complexity of your software?
  • Is it apt for the software engineering capability?
  • Is it flexible as per the project risk and quality insurance?

Are you looking out for a professional to assist you choose the best model for your brand? 

We work with you to eliminate the hassle of your day-to-day software development requirements by utilizing our agile methodologies. We have done it for a variety of industry verticals so far all over the world, and we would be delighted to help you achieve your success as well.

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