When designing new products which may have advanced with the technology growth of today it is important to be consistent with some basic designs so that they are still easy to use. These designs may be the product/company logo, basic button placement or button symbols (Lidwell, Holden, Butler 2003). By keeping these aspects the same as previous products or other products of a similar purpose people are able to see the functionality of the product at a glance and will have a basic understanding of how to use the product. The use of a logo allows products to be instantly recognisable by customers this allows to company to keep customers returning because they are familiar with their products. Apple is a prime example of this; by using a simple logo the which is recognised world wide and maintaining consistent design principles they are able to maintain a loyal customer base (Lee, Koubeka 2011). By combining different forms of consistency, such as aesthetic and functional consistency, they are able to create products which function in a easy and logical manor which means new customers will not be turned off the product while also appealing to returning customers.
Consistency is especially important for products which are widespread and very popular such as MP3 Players, Gaming Consoles or Computer systems. For example gaming consoles use specific buttons on their controllers which are almost universal, the use of X,Y, A and B buttons is used by most with a few variations, they are also used in the same configuration to help the user change between consoles (Reineche, Bernstein 2011). If each individual manufacture used individual buttons it would be hard for customers to change from one console to another and therefore would be a turn-off for new customers. Without some consistency in design principles new or growing companies would be at a huge disadvantage when trying to gain customers, in this way consistency is hugely important.
Lee, Sangwon; Koubeka, Richard J. (2011). “The Impact of Cognitive Style on User Preference Based on Usability and Aesthetics for Computer-Based Systems”. International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction. 27(11) pp. 1083-1114
Lidwell, William; Holden, Kritina; Butler, Jill (2003). Universal Principles of Design. Rockport.
Sonderegger, Andreas; Sauer, Juergen (2010). “The influence of design aesthetics in usability testing: Effects on user performance and perceived usability”. Applied Ergonomics. 4 (3): 403–410
Reineche, Katharina; Bernstein, Abraham (2011). “Improving Performance, Perceived Usability, and Aesthetics with Culturally Adaptive User Interface”. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction