As we move into a brand new year—and a brand new decade—Augmented Reality (AR) has really established itself as a mainstream technology. According to statistics, there are one billion AR users right now—a figure that’s set to rise drastically over the coming years.
AR is already revolutionizing the way users experience brands and digital platforms. Snapchat and Pokémon GO are prime examples. While spicing up your selfies with a jazzy filter or catching Pokémons in your neighborhood isn’t what you’d call ground-breaking UX, you’d be staggered at the number it has generated: in its initial week of release, Pokémon Go was being played by 65 million people around the planet, and Snapchat was valued at $24 billion when it first went public in March, 2017.
As one of the biggest technological trends right now, AR is having a huge impact on user experience, and (by extension) UX design. The upside is that AR has a huge potential to resolve user problems that, for years, have been a challenge for UX designers—like low engagement and high interaction costs. However, there’s a flipside as well. AR has also brought new challenges for designers.
If you’re looking to build an engaging AR experience, here are 3 UX principles you should definitely take into consideration.
Always Think About the Environment
Whether the augmented reality experience is being designed to take place in the users’ homes, the streets, or on the side of a bus stop (like Pepsi’s), make sure the interactions are designed and tested for those specific conditions. The user journeys need to be defined for the relevant environments and the interface has to define in terms of how it reacts with each physical scenario. Also, the environment needs to be kept intuitive and familiar so that it doesn’t overwhelm users.
Consider Screen Real Estate
When designing an AR experience, it may feel like you’re only limited by the physical world. However, your actual limit is your screen. Remember, users don’t like a cluttered screen as it only distracts them from the experience at hand. Make sure the virtual elements and options you’re providing with your AR experience are well-organized and information is hidden into menus.
Ensure Onboarding is Simple
Onboarding can be quite challenging even in 2-dimensional spaces, but even more important in a 3D space where the learning curve is bigger. A great way to simplify onboarding is to integrate clues into the UX that encourage interaction with the environment. Dynamic animations and graphics can be inserted not only as a guide, but also as a part of the experience itself.
If you want to take your brand marketing strategy to the next level with an AR-based application, get in touch with our experts at Elementals Studio. We’re a leading provider of 3D Graphics solutions and augmented reality application development services.