Augmented reality, abbreviated as AR technology, has earned its unique spot in the worlds of entertainment, education, business and many more industries. As a matter of fact, its use in the enterprises is expected to hit $2.4 billion by 2019. But yes, it sure tests the competence of the designers profoundly. Top designers tend to focus on designing mobile and web apps and are well-versed in that arena but AR requires more than just those skills.
Take a look at how UX is affected by AR and means through which UX designers can win over their AR challenges to create an effective augmented UI.
Introduction to AR
Think of AR as a blender that combines both real world data and programmed elements (created elements) into a third level architecture of dynamic augmented experience. Interaction with AR apps is way ahead of the concept of merely seeing raw information since users get a real-time experience and live responses to their activities.
We do acquaint ourselves with trendy apps every now and then, both in Android and iOS Smartphone ecosystems. For example, we have AR apps you definitely would’ve heard of or tried using them at some point of time:
Pokémon Go: Players are entitled to catch game characters called Pokémons by moving around in the real world and finding them.
SnapChat lenses: Facial recognition is the tech behind this biggie. Filters enhance the user’s images with computer-generated effects.
Microsoft HoloLens: What’s more satisfying than being able to watch and interact with 3D complex models like a human heart. Microsoft HoloLens works in this domain.
HOW TO DESIGN FOR AR
Since this field is just blooming, there are no UX best practices on the record yet. Let’s start with what we personally feel about AR apps and UX in AR apps.
1. AR Use-Case Needs to be Evaluated
Before you begin any chapter, mark the highlights. Make sure you have a clear and defined goal of how you want your AR app to work. Ask yourself if the AR experience you seek fits your project and repeat the question over and over again until you’re confident.
Never, I repeat, never make an AR app just because it’s hip to survive in the industry. You’ll end up ruining your app’s UX. The objectives of a business must be clear in order to facilitate good AR experiences. You need to evaluate the situation: your app’s functionality and what your users need corresponding to the AR display medium.
Pay close attention to the needs and demands of your users. What follows is a good user experience, provided you work on their requirements. Invest some time collecting valuable opinions from the target audience to design the perfect AR experience for your users. Ask them how they carry out roles in the real world and figure out how AR can assist them in their job.
2. Consider The Environment In Which The Product Will Be Used
You need to keep it plain and simple. Make the user feel home. Integrate your AR design and make the user feel the environment natural.
A private environment like home or workplace could have lengthier user sessions and an intricate interaction model. The entire body could involve in the communication and besides, some special devices could be used in manipulation like a head mounted display.
However, public environments focus on providing users a shorter user session. Considering the mobility of the users and the duration of their AR experiences outdoors, keeping the user session short is a productive step.
And this is why you were asked to discover the users’ environmental condition in the first place in order to design an appropriate AR app.
Leave the project’s technical requirements aside, first concentrate on the interaction scenarios, to be honest. Gather details of the environment that has to be augmented. The more factors you explore, the better is your work being done.
A review process must include User testing. This must be carried out after your AR app is done with its first working prototype. Run user tests in real conditions. The bottom line here? Make the product’s user-interaction as comfortable as possible.
3. Make The Interaction With AR Simple
Technically, AR apps in comparison to the typical apps has its simple tasks performed faster. Bearing in mind that users look for unique elements and good UX in your apps, make your efforts count. They are more convinced if the UX is user-friendly rather than the tech used to construct the very page. To be on the safer side, use these approaches:
- Feel the environment where the user would likely perform the task.
- Map the steps in order and work through each step your users will go through in order to accomplish the task would follow.
- Record every step.
This can be used up to perform a sequential task analysis. It simply drives the users to see things naturally. For instance, Google Translate plays cool with AR technology. The User could capture text through the phone camera and the text gets translated to the desired language subsequently. The value of AR tech is clearly portrayed in the below example.
Lessen the physical inputs from the users. Registering the design of the page or the augmented picture is going to take some time and keyboarding data might be a little too hard for the sake of a smoother UX.