Focusing on Details - User Experience

Posted by Ryan Gittings

I wanted to write about something I felt very passionately about, user experience. In everything I do, I need to think about who I'm designing for and almost second guess how they are going to use the pieces of technology I design. I wanted to share some thoughts and opinions and what good user experience is and how we can learn from others to improve our own products.

Learning from Apple

The new iPhone comes with some awesome technology, including Force Touch. We first saw this type of technology on the Watch, which I must admit, I love. It feels an intuitive way to interact with the watch, keeping the user interface cleaner, and making it easier to access menus. It's a truly unique experience, that enhances the user experience for sure. In almost every aspect of the OS, that 3D touch menu is available and after repetitive use, it becomes cognitive.

Now, having had the iPhone since September, I don't use Force Touch no where near as much as I should. When I first found out that the feature was coming to iPhone, I was excited. It opens up the opportunities to developers to add a new level of interaction, which is always exciting, and usually always revolutionary, for example, pinch to zoom.

Analysing Why I Don't Use Force Touch

The biggest single problem with Force Touch on iPhone is that it's just not cognitive. The experience really isn't consistent, and there's no way you can really figure out if something can be hard pressed. There's a huge inconsistency across the platform. Some apps have introduced Force Touch, some haven't. It just hasn't become cognitive. By the time you try out to see if something can be force touched, it'd have been quicker to bypass force touch and just use it naturally. As it becomes more and more integrated, it's going to be interesting to see if I do use it more, to see if it becomes an important way to interact with iOS. Will it find a familiar/consistent use, like it has on the watchOS? Only time will tell.

What We Can Learn?

Monitoring the way you use and interact with technology is fascinating. As designers, we need to make it as easy as possible for a wide range of users to easily be able to use the product, be it a website, or an application. Making sure experiences are consistent and can be easily used as well as accessed is a fundamental part of any design, when making any user interface or user experience design choices.

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