The Principles of Design Applied to the Internet of Things:

Posted by MPH Group on September 3rd, 2020

Apps, Games, Experiences and Platforms are only as effective as their core designer team is skilled. Having this in mind, it’s no wonder design principles are being increasingly discussed.

The Internet of Things is all about adapting and connecting, and that carries the necessity to have mediums, connections, platforms and programs.

When it comes to these elements, design is crucial, and it can make or break any innovation. This is a concept that is becoming increasingly accepted and discussed among experts, and today we thought to approach it through this blog post.

If that feels like something you’re interested in, then let’s continue.

The Adaptation Needs to Be Intuitive:

User friendly is a concept that is being thrown around since computers were first invented and “users” became a thing.

One of the things that majorly revolutionized the computer industry was the invention of the mouse.

The mouse gave a great advantage to its developers because it provided the most user friendly way to interact with a product, and it showed because we all use mouses today.

This advantage is still apparent, even about 40 years since it was first invented. Game developers, for example, can’t make cross platform multiplayer shooting games often because pc gamers would have a huge advantage against their console counterparts, after all the mouse makes it easier to aim than the analogic gamepad.

This just goes to justify that adaptation needs to keep intuition in mind, you need to make it simple, easy to use, intuitive, almost second nature for the user.

Only then will the design of the Internet of Things devices serve their purpose to connect technology and users in the way it’s supposed to.

The Internet of Things Needs its Products to Be Easilly Understood:

One of the core values for any consumer out there is practicity, also known as convenience. This can be achieved through a lot of things, such as the distribution of the products or services themselves, but also through the way they are designed.

The Internet of Things needs the products to be designed in a way that they are intuitive and that the user instantly learns how to use, or uses them with not a lot of effort involved.

Having said that, some products are simply too complex to make convenient, and they are the ones who should be designed to be easilly understood instead.

Making instructional material that is easy to grasp is one of the sureshot ways to boost adoption.

The Design Must Accomodate for User Innovations:

One of the trends we’ve been seeing throughout the years is that products are changed by brands thanks to consumer use.

Consumers are the first ones to find other uses for a product, and they are also the ones voting with their wallet on which product component they like the most.

There have been numerous products that were released with this in mind, fully knowing it would be the user to make them grow.

Let’s analyze one of the most glaring examples of this – the successful videogame “Skyrim”, which was released with a huge modding kit that had convenience written all over it.

Skyrim is one of the most played games ever up until this day simply because players aren’t running out of content – other users are constantly uploading their own takes of the game.

This gave much more life to the product, and the Internet of Things’ applications can benefit from this experiment by doing the same – trusting their users to make things grow, but not too much as to release a half baked product and wait for the users to fix it.

Experiences Must Be Contextualized:

Finally, know that all experiences must be contextualized. There is a lot of trash out there done in the name of the Internet of Things that lacks context.

Don’t get me wrong, great products, apps and connectors come out all the time, but there are also a lot of gimmicks with no context made just for the sake of it.

To contextualize experiences in the IoT, one must never forget to add context to them, and one shouldn’t forget the golden rule of IoT, which is the one we’re going to talk about in the next paragraph.

Don’t Forget Its About Connections:

This is the golden rule, and one you shouldn’t forget. This is what makes IoT devices IoT – connectivity.

You should bear in mind that connectivity is what makes a good product great.

To put it simply, a fridge that connects to the Internet is good, but a fridge that connects to the internet and to a store to buy its stocks is great!

Connectivity matters, but it needs context – it needs to be useful.

If you keep this in mind, I’m sure you’ll become a great IoT hunter, and you’ll develop a good digital transformation plan in no time.

We hope you now know a little bit more about what makes IoT important, and what’s a good IoT product and a gimmicky one – it has to do with connectivity, context, ease of use and innovation.

MPH Group

About the Author

MPH Group
Joined: July 30th, 2020
Articles Posted: 3

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