Usability for anything, anywhere, anytime.

Posts Tagged ‘ Android ’

Designing for TV – Part 1

January 9th, 2012, Posted by Mark Sloan

Google TV» (GTV) is a platform that has been out for over a year and has seen a major redesign in that time. Many new manufacturers have announced their own GTV’s at the 2012 CES» as well as their own branches of the Android OS. What is apparent already is that a few basic tenants of designing for TV are being violated. The first that we will address is that TVs are a shared experience and therefore the system should display “live TV” as much as possible. This quick post looks at how Google TV violates this basic concept.  (more…)

Amazon Kindle Fire

January 8th, 2012, Posted by Mark Sloan

The Kindle Fire (or Fire for this article) entered the “tablet” market this Fall sporting a tiny package and the full Amazon suite of media products behind it (books, movies, music, apps). With Amazon’s own application store, the Fire has access to Android applications, but not the full suite of the Android Marketplace. Other sites such as Engadget», The Verge», Anandtech», and Arstechnica» are the place to go for detailed analysis of specs and features. They’ve done a great job and there is little to add there. What this review will do is examine the Kindle from a usability perspective, specifically, how easy it is to use the interface and then how easy it is to read typical content. The short answer is that this feels like a new category of device, not a full-fledged tablet. (more…)

Android Updates

December 30th, 2011, Posted by Mark Sloan

The Samsung Galaxy Nexus goes on sale today but software updates for their older handset, Nexus S, is not expected any time soon. Today the clock officially starts for Google to get Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) running on older hardware. The frustration I personally experience is not knowing when they even expect to ship it.

Update on December 30th:

Apparently Google had to pull the Nexus S update as people were having trouble. This is their own phone and they don’t have 4.0 working on it yet? What were they testing on all these months?

LEVEL Studios: Client

November 30th, 2011, Posted by Mark Sloan

As Director of UX at LEVEL Studios», Mark Sloan helped craft UX/UI solutions for multi-platform user experiences across connected devices.  As Sloan Studio developed, the relationship with LEVEL evolved to a peer agency collaboration, where LEVEL hired services from Sloan Studio to serve existing clients. Work included consumer electronics from Android handheld devices to TVs based on the Google TV platform and required a deep understanding of both ergonomic and technological limitations. Sloan Studio worked with LEVEL’s internal UX and design teams to develop the overall UX concepts, wireframes and specifications.

When working on multi-platform devices, it is critical to reset requirements for each as their form factors dictate what is feasible. User goals differ from mobile, to tablet, to TV and from Applications to web sites, so the design must be based on these goals. The ergonomics of each platform also dictates usage, including how they physically interact whether through direct manipulation (multi-touch) or via an input device such as a remote or mouse. To learn more about our multi-platform experience, please Contact Us.