A design critique of the new gestures and interactions on the newest iOS.
iOS 11 — as Apple calls it — is no doubt a “Giant step for iPhone” and a “Monumental leap for iPad”. There have been tremendous changes to the way one interacts with iOS on the different devices. With the introduction of the iPhone X, which loses the home button, there is an increased requirement to make actions possible with more gestures on the screen.
iOS 11 brings to our devices a significant number of changes that throws us off at the start (some of the new iPad changes threw me off, no doubt).
Before getting into the depths of the critique, I’d like to make a few things clear –
- I do not work for Apple. This is not a critique of the designers who spent relentless hours working to make iOS 11 successful. As with any designs, there are constraints, trade-offs, and research behind decisions made. I am unaware of them — this is purely an evaluation from a designer, also a daily iOS user, who cannot not see from a critical lens while using products. Let’s just call it an occupational hazard!
- This is purely a critique from my perspective — just like every designer out there, I have my biases and preferences. This critique stems from the idea of what I believe is a better user experience. Definitely, the designers from Apple might have much more validation and data to support their decisions.
- As with any design critique, I like some data to go off of. For this purpose, I had a few simple tasks tested on the iPad just to understand if it was just me with these quirks with iOS. Spoiler: Turns out, it wasn’t just me.
In this design critique, I am going to talk from three aspects of the iOS experience –
- The gestures and interactions
- Precision required to use iOS
- Parity between different devices running iOS 11.