Smartphone users have evolved into thinking more like a computer than a cell phone. That is why it is no surprise that we see so many apps that are available solely on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. People of all ages and from all walks of life use mobile apps in one form or another. As our mobile technology improves we are also seeing advanced features that can only be executed on the go. Here are some of the latest mobile app design trends to keep an eye on:
We saw this with the launch of the Apple iPhone 4 which combined the camera and GPS into one device. Now, with the Android handset platform and Windows Phones, we are seeing augmented reality mobile app design trends take hold. This lets users virtually touch items in real world with the use of their smartphones. Examples include shopping applications that allow consumers to view items in stores and then purchase them with a swipe of their smartphone.
Another one of the mobile app design trends to keep an eye on is gesture UI, which is the new way of designing user interfaces with only finger gestures. What is gestures? Basically, these are virtual icons that can tell the smartphone user where to go or what action to perform on a screen. Developers who are implementing this trend will need to come up with new and interesting ways to get people’s attention while still providing a streamlined experience.
As touch UI progresses, so does the trend of designing smartphones without any buttons, icons, menus, etc. Many app makers are starting to adopt a white space approach to the app to make it more functional. With no elements to guide users, the only thing you’ll see is smooth transition from one page to the other or the app will be completely blank. The latest app designs are all about making use of white space extensively.
Another one of the mobile app design trends is to implement a darker theme, especially for navigation elements. There are actually two reasons for this, the first reason being the importance of visual cues in increasing user engagement. Dark elements help focus the users’ attention on a particular element with more clarity than a lighter theme would. The second reason is that darker shades help create more immersive and natural experiences. In other words, using darker colours for backgrounds, icons, and buttons creates more natural and appealing experiences that are more appealing to a wide variety of users.
Also part of the 3D graphics set off by many mobile app design trends, 3D graphics help make your app’s more interesting and fun to use. It also helps make the app’s overall functionality easier to understand. The best part about this particular design practice is that it enables the app designers to get a glimpse of the business owner’s vision for the app before he/she spends time and effort in building it.
Many mobile applications have started including more elements of interactive content in their apps. However, one of the latest mobile app design trends is the incorporation of high-end 3D graphics and rich digital textured backgrounds in their applications. This not only creates a more rich experience but makes the app’s overall performance simpler and easier to understand as well.
Although material design is considered the most important aspect of creating a user experience, some mobile app design trends have started focusing on using colourful, shimmering and other visually interesting materials more often. Another practice that has become popular in recent years is the incorporation of white space. Usually seen in the latest mobile games and innovative social networking applications, the use of white space allows the designers to add more elements of interaction to the app. This practice is useful when making a mobile application that includes rich digital media like videos and images, so adding a white border around these elements helps the user focus on the content and not on the flashy background.
What are some of the trends you are seeing the mobile app space? Leave a comment below with your answer.