Android design principles: Enchant Me, Simplify My Life, and Make Me Amazing

The SXSW conference is in full swing in Austin, Texas, and while some companies are announcing upcoming hardware projects, technology topics in general are a big part of the festival. One topic that we found particularly interesting is the discussion on Google’s thought process when designing Android.

Helena Roeber, an Android user experience designer from 2007 through 2012, and Rachel Garb, the lead interaction designer for Android apps, led the talk discussing how Google breaks down the design principles into three base categories: Enchant Me, Simplify My Life, and Make Me Amazing. Roeber said that the design team wanted to see how people used technology on a day-to-day basis, so they made in-home visits, learning that people were frequently overwhelmed by "limitless flexibility." The team also works hard on ensuring that Android is friendly to the users. For example, instead of saying, "Google is trying to reach out to the servers in order to access your account," a simple, "Your phone is contacting Google," works better. They also removed the phrase, "Are you sure," as they found Android users disliked it.

All these years of research have culminated with Google Now. Although some question the privacy aspects of Google’s tool, likening it to Skynet, there’s no question that it fits the design principles completely. It’s enchanting when the tool identifies your home and work locations without prompting, simplifies your life by providing information you may not have even thought you needed, and is overall an amazing technology.

Source: Slashdot | Image via VentureBeat

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