The UI of Tomorrow: Simple and Friendly

Posted 5 months ago by Carlos Yllobre

In the next few years we will see a continuing trend to simplify the UI of our apps/websites. This is happening because of two main factors: How we interact and understand new technology, and the rise of more friendly and human software and interfaces. Let’s go step by step.

1. The Simplicity Revolution

We live in a world oversaturated with information, so it is natural for modern UIs to avoid complication. Simplifying what we do (and expect our users to do) allows us to save time and focus on other matters. We’re time poor, and reducing the number of decisions we make every day can improve our quality of life.

“Reducing the number of decisions we make every day can improve our quality of life.”

The e-commerce sector has been one of the first to understand and adopt this. Today we don’t need to carry cash or credit cards. With a simple tap we have everything we need in one single device — our phone. From ordering a takeaway to buying a car, we can do it online. This is nothing new — the online revolution has already happened, we’re now experiencing the Simplicity Revolution. We want everything easier, simpler, safer and we want it now. This is how we’ve come to understand technology. A good app is one that solves your problem in the fastest, simplest way, bringing you the exact solutions you need in no time.

How does this effect the UX/UI?

2. Human — Software Interaction

One day we will start having feelings for some software in the same way we have for material things, like your wedding dress or your old ukulele. Today we can already see apps that interact with us in a different way, like Lark and Penny.

“One day we will start having feelings for some software in the same way we have for material things”

We are starting to leave behind the traditional way to interact with an app (tap, tap, tap), instead we will be able to enjoy a nice “conversation”, which at the same time solves our problems. Currently we see Siri as a shortcut to get to the information we need — new movies in the closest cinema, tomorrow’s weather, a Wikipedia article, etc — but in a not-too-distant future the way we interact with Siri, and other apps like Penny, won’t be as a means-to-an-end but for solutions they can offer forthright.

How does this affect the UX/UI?

Avatars I made for friendly messaging apps UI: Remi, Gemmy and Trekk

Avatars I made for friendly messaging apps UI: Remi, Gemmy and Trekk

Conclusion

There’s no doubt these are exciting times for many of us. For many others this will be problematic for various reasons. I am in the first group, I believe that refining and simplifying our UIs can have a positive impact and won’t necessarily dull our senses. In my opinion the real value of technology and design is in how it can improve people’s life quality, and we should always design our products with this vision in mind.

“The real value of technology and design is in how it can improve people’s life quality”

Thank you for reading!

You can download here a Sketch file of different Messaging App UIs that I created based on this article. Enjoy!

También disponible en español aquí.

This article was originally published at charlieyllobre.com.

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Product designer | Illustrator | Traveller in love with the mountains and the sea | Ukulele player | Photographer | Avid reader | charlieyllobre.com. Say hi on Twitter.

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