Learning Portfolio Three Q3

The study of psychology is necessary when studying design because without an understanding of the psychology of your target audience it is harder to design a product which they would find appealing enough to invest money in. By studying the audience you wish to sell product or even ideas to you can customise the design around that audience and therefore make it easier to sell you product. Visual design is all about how a person sees a product, if you target a particular group and use design tactics which will appeal to that audience you have a better chance of being successful.

Learning Portfolio One Q2 Examples

A common product that uses this principle are Mac computers, especially laptops. Mac laptops use a sleek and simple design with light colours and a simple key design, these together make them look easier to use than other laptops brands which use darker colours and more complicated key deigns. They are also lighter than most laptops which is appealing to consumers for they’re are easier to use and transport, because of this they are popular for university and high school students who need to take them to schools and people who work away from home (Reineche, Bernstein, 2011). This is a major selling point and has given Mac and edge over other computer companies. They have even named a few of their products with this in mind the Mac-book Air is a good example of this.

Mobile phones are also a wide user of the aesthetic-usability effect. Due to our technological advancements new phones are being released almost every month with companies such as Samsung, Apple and HTC releasing new models of established brands every year. The Samsung Galaxy and Iphone lines are always being updated however without changing the look and feel of the phone these lines would quickly loose popularity because they would be seen as ‘outdated’ and ‘obsolete’ even with software updates. So these companies release a new line which looks nicer, thinner and with upgrades to the screen size of colour options in order to keep customers returning. In reality the ‘software upgrades’ the phone has are usually minimal at best and the only real reason to buy the new one is aesthetic (Sonderegger, Sauer, 2010).

Televisions are also frequently overhauled and ‘upgraded’. With the rise of the internet streaming and sites such as Netflix and Stan people no longer need to rely on Television to watch and follow their favourite TV shows so television companies needed to make people want to use a standard television rather than a computer. Bigger screens, higher quality picture and some can even be connected to a Wi-Fi network these are all changes made to the product to increase its aesthetics for a customer in the hopes that they will prefer this product.

References

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

Learning Portfolio One Q1 Summery

This article discusses how the aesthetic-usability effect works in relation to particular products to help persuade people to purchase them. The aesthetic-usability effect describes the phenomenon where people are more inclined to believe that products with a more aesthetically pleasing design are easier to use than those with a less aesthetically pleasing design. This principle states that if a product looks appealing, and often very simple, the consumer with choose it over another model which looks more complicated even if it is untrue.  The use of aesthetically pleasing designs has increased in recent years because other companies are forced to adopt them in order to stay viable, without it they could lose customers and business and would be unable to stay in business. There are many reasons why this tactic is usefully when trying to sell products. the most common reason is that with the increase in our technological capabilities people are worried that some products many to too complicated to used if they have never owned/used one before(Reineche, Bernstein, 2011). By using a simple but appealing design the creator is showing that the product is easy to use and that anyone of any age can use it, even if that is not strictly the case. By combining factors such as colour combinations, text size and fonts and visual layout (Lee & Koubeka, 2011) designers are able to produce products which not only look good but also look functional and easy to use. This is the key to the aesthetic-usability effect, if a product looked good but not functional or too complicated a customer would be less likely to purchase it but by using this effect they are able to draw people in, they also use this to keep customers coming back to their products. Light colours such as white, silver and light blue are often used because they stimulate people to feel positive about something, they are also used because they give the feeling of something being ‘modern’ which is important to people especially if they are buying a phone or laptop computer. Many people believe that the ‘newer’ a product is the easier it will be to use (Lidwell, Holden & Butler, 2003). The way a product look and feels will always be a huge factor when designing a product because we as a consumer are driven, especially in society today, to make life easier and stress free. Tools such as laptops, mobile phones and tablets allow us to simplify our day to day lives and are the products which benefit the most from the aesthetic-usability effect because how they look and feel usually dictates how easy they are to use (Sonderegger, Sauer, 2010).  

References

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