Our Multi-Device Life

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How many devices did you interact with today?

We interact with many devices per day. Designing the experience of these interactions is getting more challenging every day. Christophe Stoll has summarised a few scenarios that designers of digital products need to consider. His summary is just the tip of the ice berg.

by Christophe Stoll

One step back: Our lives are changing. This is nothing new. It has been like this since the beginning of evolution. It’s kind of the whole point of evolution. Just today lives are changing faster and faster. The speed increases decade by decade.

Take yourself as an example. How many electronic or digital devices have you interacted with today? How many more than in 2008?

The design challenges rise proportionally to the rising numbers in the answers to this question. The more devices pop up on our planet and in our lives, the more we need to establish consistent mental models and interaction patterns – across devices. Today we interact with our personal PC differently than with our mobile phone – or with the ticket machine at the train station. If the number of devices we interact with rise, the number of interaction principles we need to learn and be able to apply rise. For some people remembering today’s number of interaction patterns is already too much.

Tomorrow there will be more people for whom that is too much. This is not acceptable. We need to create an inclusive digital world.

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