AI Driven UX
It is hard to separate Machine learning and UX design as they are both invaluable to improve the quality of a product experience.
AR and VR provide an opportunity to design a unique and highly-immersive experience for the user, unlike any other technology. It has the power to completely redefine how we interact with our environment. Recently, Niantic released PokemonGo, an augmented reality platform that transports the user into a virtual world, which feels more real-life like. With new innovations from Apple (AR Kit) and Google (AR Core) on the way, the industry is making rapid progress to enter the mainstream.
In AR and VR, there is no need for the user to give any commands, the device automatically responds to the user’s environment and interpret gestures and actions in real-time. AR and VR opens up a whole new world to us where we closely interact with inanimate objects, feel more connected to people and our environment and can picture things the way we want them to be. The potential of AR and VR in industries such as healthcare, manufacturing and media is also enormous.
It’s a major challenge to design an AR and VR experience for a number of reasons. Because we are dealing here with screen-less interfaces that have no shape, size and form. It is not practical to bring in the concepts of 2D screen-based interfaces like those of smartphones and laptops into AR. With AR and VR, we have to define new interaction standards and move away from the traditional ways. Importantly, we have to keep in mind that augmented and virtual reality projects need a different set of rules and design practices.
Although there is much talk about the potential of AR ad VR in improving various business functions, but you need to be specific about what you want to achieve. The amount of work that goes in to planning and implementing these technologies has to be considered. Without a clear-cut business benefit, there is no point pursuing AR and VR technologies. For example, AR and VR is not helpful in activities of mass awareness given its low adoptions rates. However, for a corporate training program, it’s a great tool to involve more employees in a fun and collaborative manner.
As the number of web users on mobile devices is rapidly increasing, every business understands the need to build a responsive mobile site for users. It’s better to get your product out there with a mobile-first strategy to help people give feedback and learn quickly from other users. 76 percent of millennial say their phone is useless without mobile apps and 74 percent open an app when bored. It is important to avoid too many actions and unnecessary functionalities, and ensure a uniform experience across devices.
When it comes to designing user experiences for AR and VR, the challenges are of a different kind. You design for people who are solely in control of their experience. Users are in the driving seat to take individual decisions that affect them. You just have to look from a distance and ensure a more fulfilling experience. All other media formats like movies, show, plays etc. occurs from a third person perspective. On the contrary, in a virtual experience, the viewer is the first person. This is why AR and VR is a unique platform because of the freedom it gives to the user. As creators, what you can do is provide the best methods to augment the reality surrounding the user.
To make the AR and VR experience more impactful, you need to equip designers with the right knowledge and tools. Most of the designers are experienced in the mobile domain, and may find it hard to adjust to the requirements of AR and VR. Think of how familiar we are with our mobile devices. Everything is at our fingertips - A click on a button to open or cancel a window, easily identifiable features, and an interactive UI. There are not many similarities between designing for a mobile to that of an AR and VR device. Designers have to remain flexible while drawing new inputs as they make progress with the AR design. While some mobile strategies can be applied to VR, it’s still a new experience for the people involved.
It takes a certain amount of time to complete an AR and VR project. A lot of work happens in the background that may not be noticed by people of other departments. A general rule says, you need to start off the project 12-16 weeks prior to the product launch. However, when working under strict timelines, you have to find ways to finish off the project as early as the possible. But, in most cases, it is recommended to give designers sufficient time to review and test the product for a better user experience.