UX/UI – App Research/Analysis

As the project is based around UX & UI I wanted to ensure that these were thought about throughout the course of app design process, including the research. UX (user experience) is based around how something works and how the individual interacts with it, I thought that research into how people use their smartphones and important aspects of using the mobile. In terms of UI (user interface) I felt that it was important to see how other apps work, layouts and aesthetics to see which feature are key.

I wanted to see how people interact with apps and with their smartphones, I decided to start off by looking at myself when using my phone to see if this would highlight anything to me. When using my phone it become a natural thing for me to just scroll, swipe and tape within certain apps, for example instagram. When using this it was like I just had instant muscle memory from using it, I was aware where all the feature were and aware of who to get from one element to another quickly. This motion of scrolling, swiping and tapping is almost becoming second nature to us, I decided to have a look at various individuals when using their phone. I noticed that people endless scroll through apps like facebook and twitter and that is second nature. In some cases the motion of swiping up to unlock the phone was key as well.

I identified 4 different motions that appear key to people use of mobile apps;

  • swiping
  • scrolling
  • single tap
  • double tap

All apps seem to use these motions to allow their users to use muscle memory to make using their app easy and simple. By looking at these motions that are used it will help me to consider whats the best way to transition between the different element on the app. This is an important element to consider as it will effect the use of the app and ideally I would like the app to be as simple to use as possible.

I started by looking at apps that were already out there for dog owners. The app ‘working dog’ is a social app for dog trainers, allow them to keep track of dogs and their trainers. The layout of this app seem similar to that of other social media apps like facebook, using a navigation bar at the bottom of the screen. The colour scheme that they have gone for is green and white which could highlight the outdoor link to dogs.

Dogo was another app that I looked at to analyse the aesthetic, again this app seemed to use green and white as the main colour scheme. However, using illustrated icons to to add pops of colour to the design. In terms of layout it seemed as though there were different icons to direct you to various areas of the app which was simple enough to work.

Furthermore, Dog Walking – training with your dog was another app that I decided to look at. In terms of aesthetics this varied hugely from the others because of the colour scheme being a red and white one. I think that this seems to work very well in what this app is for, it stands out on the home screen of the phone too. This app was more about tracking the progress and fitness of the walker and dog rather than finding routes etc. The layout of the app seemed easy to navigate because it had a navigation bar at the bottom again. I think that the placement of the map was interesting as it seems too small to follow in a way.

By analysing these apps and looking at there layouts and aesthetics as given me the chance to think about what the aesthetics of my app would look like. It  has also allowed me to consider the importance of layout in helping the user to navigate through the app. As my particular app is all around helping the dog walker find information they require quicker the layout of the app is one of the most important elements.

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