Mobile Application Design Trends
5 Trends Mobile Application Developers are implementing During Mobile Application Development
As with any industry, the mobile application industry has evolved trends which are considered “in” and attractive when it comes to mobile application design compared to other trends which are not so “cool” and attractive to its users. Many mobile application developers are realizing that mobile application design are trend-driven and for that reason, they have been focusing a lot more attention on the layout and design of mobile applications as well as the functionalities that these mobile applications can perform. In the following, we will examine 5 specific trends which have been taking place in the mobile application industry with regards to mobile application design and layout of the mobile applications user interface.
- The “Instagram” Effect: This design was originally introduced in 2008 when the first version of Twitter was released for the iPhone. It centers on the “pull-to-refresh” technique which essentially is photo-sharing for specific mobile application design layouts. So rather than create a specific layout, mobile application developers will pull photographs from various resources and incorporate them with their mobile application layout to make it more attractive rather than if they created their own layout. This is efficient because it allows mobile applications to consistently change the layout/design of their mobile applications without the need to re-design the whole user-interface screen.
- Bold, Primary Colors and Gradients with Minimal Gloss: Mobile application developers are realizing that color is becoming increasingly important to make their mobile application stand out from their competition. In the past, most mobile application developers created their mobile applications similar to Apple’s native i-OS applications which were often considered blend and had no “flavor” to it but as we progress into the future, we are starting to see more mobile applications move away from the blue and gradient strip background and shift into more bolder primary colors and gradients. The glossy button look which was popularized by Web 2.0 is also being replaced by more matte finishes. Mobile application developers feel that colors can create a strong emotional response from its users and by incorporating strong colors; they are hoping to reach out to their users on a more emotional level than in the past.
- Texture, Texture, Texture: Mobile application developers are also starting to focus more attention on using textures and patterns within their mobile application layouts in addition to bold, primary colors. In fact, a recent study revealed that wood panels are one of the more popular choices as well as semi-transparent menu items for mobile application layouts. Texture-driven applications are expected to rise in the near future and a large part of that can be linked to the subtle effect textures can have on the overall appearance of a mobile application.
- Smooth, Clean Gradients and Shows for Depth: Just as with web design layouts, mobile application developers have been copying the very popular web design trend of more clean, minimalistic designs on their mobile application layout screens. Mobile application developers feel as though the smoother, clean layout gives users a more elegant feel when they are navigating thru a mobile application and allows users to feel less clustered by other distractions. Mobile application developers also are starting to use a lot more shadowing in their mobile application layouts which creates the perception of depth for certain buttons/interface elements to give the mobile application a more “touchable” look and feel.
- Thin Sans Serif Fonts: As mobile application development and layouts progress, mobile application developers are now shifting away from the more commonly used fonts and starting to utilize a lot more custom fonts, font sizes and font shadows for their mobile applications. For example, one common font that has been popping up on a variety of mobile applications has been the Thin Sans Serif Font with a level of drop shadow in the background. This combination of a thinner but depth-looking fonts present itself much more clearly on mobile device screens than they would on larger screens such as on computers. As mobile application developers mix and match different fonts with different background colors, they are able to determine which combinations are able to give the most crisp, clean and bold look on the layout of a mobile application’s user-interface.
Although these “in” trends in the mobile application industry are prevalent today, mobile application developers are positive that they will be changing again a year down the line and they are aware they must be on top of it in order to better serve their users in this fast growing industry. Mobile Applications are expected to dominate the high-tech industry in a few years and mobile application developers will certainly benefit when considering what “in” trends to incorporate in their mobile application design in the future.