With so many differences between mobile and computing devices, it should come as no shock that mobile app UX design is very different than for the designing for desktop. To continue our series: “how to create a mobile app”, I compile a list of basic principles of mobile app UX design that help people familiar with your mobile app interface and development unleash the unique power of their mobile app.
Mobile is very different
Although they often think that computing devices, smartphones are very different: big screen vs small screen, reliable connectivity vs intermittent, high vs low bandwidth, plugged in vs battery powered vs and so on. These would be a mistake. In fact, the reverse is true: smartphones are actually more powerful than desktops in many ways. They are highly personal, always on. Plus, they are crawling with powerful sensors that can detect location, movement, orientation, environmental conditions and more.
1. Think of mobile app UX design to Mobile mindset
Because of the differences between mobile and desktop, it’s important to get yourself into a mobile mindset before getting started.
- Be focused: All most of app entrepreneurs create a mobile app what solves one and only one problems so mobile app UX design have to be more focused and adapt to particular functions.
- Be unique: There are lots of fish in the sea of mobile apps. So create a mobile app what is different and unique. If there’s nothing special on your mobile app, why would someone pick it instead of others?
- Be considerate: App developers very focus on the technical model of their app or their business goals. These are good places to start. However, if you ever hope to create a mobile app what has good engaging mobile app UX design, remember to put yourself in users’ place!
2. Think of mobile app UX design to engagements
Provide feedback for interaction function in your mobile app UX design. The feedback function could be tactile, like the Android ‘thump’ vibration or visual with a tapped highlight button. Moreover, your mobile app UX design should display a spinner or progress bar to let user know that you received their request and are working on it. When you have to ask a user to confirm an action, make your mobile app UX design display a modal confirmation dialog. Confirmations are less intrusive than alerts because they are in response to a user action and in context.
3. Think of mobile app UX design to gestures
One of the most iconic aspects of modern mobile app UX design is that they support gesture-based user interaction. There are several things you need to keep in mind when you create a mobile app:
- Invisible: Avoid scrolling. I can assure you that ‘below the fold’ exists for mobile. Also, having a non-scrolling screen has a more solid and dependable ‘feel’ than a scrolling view because it’s more predictable. Gestures are invisible, so discovery is an issue. For example, the promotional iPads mounted in Apple’s retail stores, when a page first loads, any scrollable areas do a quick ‘reverse scroll’ into their default position. This immediately invites a swipe or flick gesture from the user without having to explicitly indicate which areas are scrollable.
- Two hands: Multi-touch gestures require two-handed operation. For example, you can try experiencing it in the iOS native Maps app which uses a pinch open gesture to zoom out. Android addresses this issue by including zoom in/out buttons overlaid on the map.
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