Story sponsored by PixelForce.
The 21st Century so far is a far cry from what was being depicted just a few short decades ago. If you grew up with Sci-Fi any time before the 90s you were probably exposed to a depiction of a future which was very angular, robotic, and very visually "technology".
The implementation and aesthetic of most tech today however, is somewhat different to what people were expecting then.
Technology in everyday life is now less a jungle of cold metal equipment and screens crunching data to run giant machines, and more an assortment of easily portable devices seamlessly connecting us to people all around the world by the internet.
The internet itself has become an entire ecosystem unto itself and has transformed mainstream society over the years.
Thanks to the global reach and widespread connectivity provided by mobile devices and the internet, users now find themselves presented with seemingly unlimited possibilities for goods and services. Information, entertainment, and social networking are now just a click away at anytime and anywhere, offered by countless competing services.
Service providers now often take a mobile first approach when creating digital services and products to keep users satisfied. Failure to satisfy your customers means they can simply click away to a competitor.
As one of Australia's leading app development agencies, the team at PixelForce knows more than most that great design is just as important in creating a great app as the code that goes into it.
Functionality and design are in fact strongly tied together, and where we once saw products designed to look spectacular and stand out for their visual appearance, we now see a lot of functional design making products that are easier to use.
Having lots of bright colours and fancy shapes often adds little value to a consumer, and can in fact hinder app design. Novelty is a fad that holds limited value for the market, but time will always hold a great deal of value.
Apple founder Steve Jobs once said "design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works." The brand is now one of the most widely known for making products that are fast, functional, and consistent.
Stripping away what makes any app unique, all the best apps have a few basic design elements or themes in common. When you open the app for the first time, almost everything you need to enjoy and navigate the app should be immediately presented to you on the home screen. If it's not immediately visible, it's no more than two or three screens away and easy to find.
It might not be immediately obvious, but by using the right design it's also possible to reduce the strain of repetitive motions - or even completely remove the repetition.
When designing an app you have to understand how all the pieces fit together, and when you should or should not add something. The white space that separates the elements within an app can be just as important as the functional buttons.
We have to try and put ourselves in the shoes of the end user and imagine what situations they're n when they're using it. The kinds of problems our product needs to solve and how we can do it most effectively.
If you place items too close together without enough space, then it can be hard to select what you want. If you use the wrong colours or visuals, it can be confusing. The visual design of an app plays a large role in how an app is used, and in how easy and satisfying it is for a user to actually use.
The great thing about design as a solution is that it allows a lot of creativity, and often there is no single correct decision. There are a number of ways to achieve the same thing, each way potentially offering a unique benefit.
Even outside of app development, a lot of great innovation in technology and software is tied closely to design and simplification. You don't always need to have an overly complex system or design to provide a meaningful solution, and often we find that a simpler solution is the better solution.
As technology becomes more commonplace in everyday life, and especially in workplaces where we spend much of our week, it's increasingly important to ensure design all our software and tools are designed to be ergonomic.
Get in touch with a PixelForce team member to discuss your digital design needs with a free half hour consultation via www.pixelforce.com.au.
Story sponsored by PixelForce.