UX Design & Wireframing
A great app requires great design – mobile User Experience design. Our Empirical Works designers are mobile-specific designers that understand the flow, technical constraints, and the latest UX trends in the mobility space. Working from your business requirements, we can help your team with transforming a great idea, a set of business requirements and your technical constraints into a clean looking and smooth feeling app through our iterative design and prototyping process, with brand-conscious look-and-feel.
Today’s mobile users are not looking for apps which are feature-centric, but for apps which are functional and easy to use. With such a large amount of apps available, a user’s quality of experience is more likely to be a differentiating factor than the amount of features that the app provides.
Empirical Works can provide your business with the cleanest, simplest and easy to use apps for your business, for both your consumer-facing apps and internal Enterprise Mobility apps.
Empirical Work’s core principle of user-centric design is to focus on users throughout the design process, and to provide an end result that not only works, but to help the user to achieve their goals efficiently and easily.
Designing for mobile apps, Empirical Works starts with a focus on two main issues:
- The small screen size on mobile devices
- The fact that mobile users are just that – mobile
Mobile apps may be accessed while the user is on the move, walking or travelling on a bus or train. These are situations in which it is more difficult to read and operate the device. Because of the small screen size, user functions and navigational features displayed on the screen must be clearly visible and easy to operate. However, there are other issues involved in user-centric design.
The design must cater for the need and expectations of its target audience. What functionality do they need in the app? How do they expect the app to respond and display the data they are looking for?
A Five Step User-Centric Design Process
The Stanford University Design School has created a five-step process, which Empirical Works has adopted for our user-centric design approach.
This first step may involve the creation of personas for the people who will use the app. Are there different groups? What are their needs and what do they expect from the app? What type of devices do they use to access the app?
It is during this stage that Empirical Works collects as much demographic data as possible is collected for the user group/s – including their age, education, employment details, interests, location, etc.
With this clear picture of the target audience, it will be easier to define and to design an app that satisfies their needs and requirements.
At this stage, the conceptual diagram needs to be transformed into a design document. This involves defining:
- The purpose of the app and what issues it will resolve
- The app’s navigation structure
- It also involves determining what data the app needs, and how this data can be best displayed on different screens and screen panels.
A crucial step in this phase is to determine the input method users will use. Will they tap or swipe the screen, use voice input, motion or some other method?
It is also important to determine which mobile operating systems will support the app. Will it be for Apple iOS devices only, for Android devices, or will the app work on both iOS and Android and possibly Windows Phone and Blackberry as well? This decision determines what development tools will be used.
Depending on the intended use of the app and what legacy systems it may need to access, there will also be a need to address security issues.
Ideate means “bringing ideas to the table”. In this step, the app is conceptualised using input from Empirical Works UX designers, app developers and potential users.
Referencing the personas previously created, it is necessary to identify the possible needs and requirements that users will confront when using the app. In this step, a diagram would be created to illustrate how the user interface should be designed to best cater for every situation confronting the user. The user interface should be intuitive to users.
The purpose here is to test the design concepts formulated in the previous steps by building a sample mobile app. A series of drawings may be produced that show each screen, including its functionality, navigational structure and intended screen content. From there, a prototype app would be built and installed on as many different mobile devices as possible, with as many different screen sizes as possible.
The final step is to test the app with as many potential users as possible and gather feedback about its usability. Does the app satisfy their needs and requirements? Is it easy to navigate? Does the app provide the data they expect?
Based on the feedback received, it may be necessary to go back to previous stages of this process to modify or add features.