At MobileCast Media, we create mobile experiences that drive revenue. How is this done? Let’s take a look at a company with an ethos of excellent user experience – Apple.
Back in the 80s, while Microsoft was making complex computers that appealed to engineers, Apple made the computer simple and easy to use. The company introduced typefaces and fonts that improved the user experience.
Apple pioneered usability and user experience, and as Microsoft followed, computers became more useful. This in turn drove revenue for Apple.
Fast forward to 2007. There were many mobile devices available when Apple came out with its iPhone. Blackberry and Palm had a seemingly unshakable market penetration, but immediately upon its release sales of the iPhone were on fire. Why was this? It was because of its simplicity, elegance, and outstanding user experience. In a short period of time, the iPhone became the market leader and continues to hold a top spot to this day.
Now the iPad’s market dominance is putting a big dent in the PC’s market share. How did Apple create such a usable device? Some of it was hardware, but most of it was highly usable software. How did Apple execute so well? In their words, Apple focused on simplicity, innovation, and perfection. Let’s go into each of these.
- Simplicity – This means thinking about the users and what they’re trying to accomplish. Tim says, “It’s so easy to add. It’s hard to edit. It’s hard to stay focused.” Creating a great user experience doesn’t involve adding lots of fancy features, but it involves thinking about the core task of the app and taking away the distractions. It should also be said that apps need to be task specific, in other words, one core task or function per app. This is the main mistake people make when designing apps: They try to put everything into it, the logic being that everything should be in one place.
- Innovation – It helps to take a step back and rethink how tasks can be reengineered. Take the task of someone buying and listening to music. In the old days, you would buy a CD and listen to it in your CD player, even if you only liked one song on that CD. The music industry didn’t see this changing, but Apple did. Apple took a big step back and reconsidered how this could be done. Now users buy digital downloads over the internet and CD players are nearly obsolete. When taking a step back, many people don’t step back far enough, and they fail to challenge assumptions.
- Perfection – This one is easy to get hung up on because perfectionists don’t tend to finish their work. In Steve Job’s case, it means working tirelessly on an idea and not releasing it until it’s ready. Let’s call this hard work. Apple was never first to market, but it always came out with the best products. When applied to app development, this means prototyping, user testing, and refining an app until it’s ready.
At MobileCast Media, we value simplicity, innovation, and hard work. To find out how we can help you with your project, just use the contact form to the right. We would love to have a conversation with you!