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If you ever wondered what is the current driving force in the online marketplace, your attention needs to stop at ‘User Experience’. Yes, you read that right! User experience or UX is an industry in itself. In fact, there are very few industries which are as fast-paced and dynamic as UX. With an ever-evolving technology, the UX designers are constantly needed to up their game. The current mindset is of universal design and is expected to gain good mileage in 2019.

There is always an existent confusion between UX and UI. Let’s get that straight. Although they seem similar, both of them are entirely different.

What exactly is ‘User Experience’ (UX)?

Let me start by shooting a question—what exactly defines the experience for you? A well-informed guess would be design, interactivity, usability, or maybe even the interface, right? Well, you’re nearly there. Presently, the dynamics of UX have changed. If you’re the one who is enveloping ‘User Experience’ and ‘User Interface’ in the same flap, you’re going the wrong way. UX design goes beyond the UI design. User experience is about realizing the fact that a product is more than a product. In order to create an everlasting experience, the product should be attractively designed, usable and more importantly provide a great user experience. The prime reason why Apple’s products are such a rage in people is that they are designed keeping in mind not only their use but also the process of owning, acquiring and the ease of using them. So, UX designers not only concentrate on the usability of the product but also the pleasure and fun of using it. A good product supplies the user with an experience that he searches in subtle contexts of life.

UX design encompasses a user-centered approach. The products are designed keeping in mind the users’ motivations and tasks they wish to perform with it. In fact, the prime aim of creating a product is to create meaningful user- experience while making them realize that they are essentially a vital part of the product’s journey too.

UX trends to watch out for in 2019

With an ever-evolving technology, the stakes are about to change forever. The universal design is set to rule the game. The future is here and we need to stay prepared for it. Let’s dive in!

Voice UIs will continue to grow

The design is not just about concentrating on the visual. Voice commands are important for the designers in the essential sense that they enable them to design a product which is governed by the user’s intent to act. The voice command technology is expected to be worth over $18 billion by 2023. Devices such as Apple’s Siri, Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and Microsoft’s Cortana have changed the mechanics by utilizing the power of voice. Presently, the majority of voice commands are concentrated on weather, music and restaurant search. In order to enhance the experience, this trend needs to change. Designers are expected to design products that go way beyond the basic uses. The industry needs designers which can transform the user-experience from average to something magical. Also, advanced customization is expected to be the major driving force of the voice command industry in 2019.

However, one challenge that needs to be addressed is the lack of human interaction. Voice command should not be essentially about just human-machine interaction but human to human interaction too. The use of technology shouldn’t impair the basic connection between people. If we go by the current trend of voice UIs, it is subtracting human presence from the main scenario. In 2019, the UX designers should take it as a priority to create technology which enhances human ease while maintaining the essential human interaction. If we expect a viable future, technology should not be a barrier in human connection.

Storytelling will take the center stage

Products are no longer being created to generate sales. All that is cliche. It’s all about a satisfactory user experience now. A customer will more likely dump a product in a heartbeat if it provides an unsatisfactory user experience. Companies are concentrating on creating products that create memories while being essentially usable.

Customers absolutely love it if they get a vibe of being part of a product’s story. There is substantial scientific research which shows that stories generate a prompt human response. The brain activity grows five-fold and we are more likely to remember the essence that the story conveys. Imagine a life without stories. Signals, signboards, road signs, graphs, and commands make for a bland scenario. The brands function pretty much in the same way. A product with just a signpost is not expected to generate much attention. In 2019, the UX designers should concentrate on products that tell a memorable story while creating experiences that the customers can relate to on a deeper level.

The demand for UX writers will increase

This was an unexplored territory till now. But lately, the tech giants like Google, Apple, and Amazon have included UX writers as a priority in their teams. Any specific reasons for that? Let’s understand it this way. The brands are constantly looking for ways to stand out while substantially enhancing the user experience. How exactly do they do that? By realizing the importance of copywriting. Writing an engaging copy is as essential as the design, prototype and the UI element of the product. Whether its a pop-up message or CTA on the button that the user clicks while making a purchase, everything influences the user experience. Just as the voice and tone of the command induce an impact on the product, well-crafted writing goes a long way in deciding if the brand is attractive or not.

With the rise of artificial intelligence, the use of chatbots, voice assistants and virtual technology is expected to grow further, making it necessary to have a compelling copy for the required product. The art of creating the right message and using apt words for the product has never been more crucial as it is now.

Device Agnostic Experience is the future

The brands are realizing the fact that they need to create holistic user experiences. A good UX is not just about an attractive design but something which is dynamic and adaptable. Device agnostic design caters exactly to that. The designers are stressing on creating products that offer a smoother multi-device user experience. In 2019, the current trend is set for a complete makeover. The designers are expected to concentrate on the user journey instead of being limited to just product use.

Marli Mesibov says “ A good design is not about forcing the users to pick products that you want; an attractive design allows the user to choose what the company offers on the device of their choice while doing what they want.”

A company which is using device agnostic design to good effect is Uber. The user’s journey can begin with simple voice command on Google Home and end his trip on iOS devices. The journey might have scaled two platforms but for the user, it is just one single unified experience.

Last but not least, the foldable phones have given a slight glimpse of their presence.

Foldable phones have a bright future

Phones with a foldable display will be a thing in 2019. The market seems immense and companies like LG, Samsung, Huawei, and Oppo already have prototypes in place to signal a potential launch in the future. The hybrid design holds great potential and the designers are expected to come up with plans which make the user-interface interactive.

A lot of designing is expected to go in the works to make it into mainstream reality. While the expectations are held high, we do hope it’s worth the hype.

The Internet of Things(IoT) is changing our experience forever. We feel more connected to the world. The advent of smart devices has bridged the gap between us and the way we experience digital life. In 2019, it is expected that augmented reality (AR) and gesture control will hold a significant place in enhancing the user experience (UX). Also, a more interactive approach is set to rule the year ahead. With an ever-expanding market, more complex yet subtle design changes are expected.

It’s safe to say that the face of UX is set to change forever.

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