Week 2: App Design Process – Prototyping

Designing apps requires a deep knowledge of devices. As new devices such as smart watches come out, it is important to be aware of changes in the industry, and the potential to make new apps with those devices.

In order for an app designer to adapt, they must consider the following:

Change the way you work

‘Lean UX cycles’ or prioritising mobile devices by designing the phone version before the pc. Most app designers will start without a computer and instead will start with paper and a pen. Mobile first is also a buzzword in the industry as starting with a smaller screen is always more effective when adapting to larger screens.

Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 12.12.06 pm


Understand development

Success of an app depends on both the designer and developer. They must work in parallel, they must both be conscious of the complexity of the design as well as the implementation. Learn to use development tools to build screens that can be transferred quickly and faithfully while communicating the design intent.

Use a variety of operating systems

You need to have access to android, ios, windows Phone and you need to be used to using them. Getting to know each device you can help you see interaction patterns, which are established solutions to problems of design. These are different on each system for example the location of the tab bar.

Prototype everything

Prototypes help you work out an apps usability. This must include more than just a flat still design and instead it must have images, transitions and gestures.

Prototypes help us work out an apps usability this must always be more than just a static design and must include images, transitions and gestures. For example the pop prototype took enables you to take pictures of paper designs and build interactive designs in minutes.

links to some helpful prototyping tools:

Proto io Prototyping tool

Pop prototyping tool

What you see is not always what you get

Apps must be tested on a mobile devices rather than a pc.

Apps are never finished

As app designers we need to abandon this concept of designing something that is finished. An app is never finished as it is a digital product which changes over time the same as websites and phones.

The core ideas of this post is that designing apps requires a new way of thinking and let’s leave web design for computer screens.

This post should give you an overview of the different ways of thinking app designers must have. I myself find it hard to have the thought process that nothing is ever finished. Because I aim to complete things not continually focus on one design.