Now that smartwatches are in the public eye after news about the Apple Watch, it is a good time to recover a very interesting article of Raluca Budiu entitled “Scaling User Interfaces: An Information-Processing Approach to Multi-Device Design”, published on Nielsen Norman Group’s web site on 13 April 2014.
In this article, Budiu notices the importance to design services for all devices sizes (desktops, laptops, tablets, smartwatches, smart TVs, etc.). It is not the same to design interfaces for tablets that for smartwatches. In the words of Budiu: “Although many of the principles may be the same, they get applied differently on different devices.” Designers must take in consideration differences in Human–Device communication channel, users’ memory limitations, screen size, etc.
Smartwatches will test designers’ capacities to adapt “same principles” to an untapped reality, full of uncertainties and opportunities.
University of Barcelona