UX is not UI – Explained in Short

By February 2, 2016App Design

Many a time misconceptions on the topics of UI design and UX design persists, along with the comparisons between the two. Once again, this article aims to help us understand what really is the difference between the two.
UX refers to user experience design whereas UI refers to user interface design. These two skills work hand in hand to produce a captivating product that achieves customer satisfaction when it is used. This is done with the blend of attractive visuals, purposeful layouts and the use of clever flow of interaction.

So what is User eXperience Design?
User experience design is the way in which the product is designed for the user to achieve satisfaction and desire to continue using it, whilst using it. It is the whole process of making the product easy to use and gaining loyalty along the way.
Regardless of the product form, a good user experience is attained when all touch points of interaction between the user and the product or company is taken into consideration and worked on. Very cognitive in nature.

So what does a person with a role in UX do?
Plenty. From strategy to prototyping and project execution. Developing a strategy and content analysis involves looking around at the competition and understanding the customer behaviour when it comes to interacting with the product. With product strategy, comes its structural definition – how the product should look like to customers for absorption. What is it that is absorbed? Content, which needs to be developed. Prototyping and execution is a common team activity which ultimately leads to a working product ready to test the market.

And what is User Interface Design?
User interface design is about the presentation of the product to the customer. It is the look and feel of the product and the interactivity of it. This is seen to be more of a technical profession as it involves designing each and every element of the touch system – the translation of branding into the graphic elements, visuals and front-end design.
Another way to look at it is to imagine the UI as the skin of the product. It is about the visual and graphic representation of it to the customer.
A person tasked do work in the UI designer role would spend most of the time working on the look and feel of the end product. This involves customer analysis, design research, graphic development and user guidance as well. As for the interaction with team members, prototyping and product tuning is a team role and a UI designer is a large contributor.

The combination – UX/UI.
Both roles are crucial for developing the best products in the world today. Both aspects of the product need to be equally strong and neither should be alone. As most UX/UI practitioners put it – a product that looks great but with poor interaction and difficult to use would be great UI poor UX, while a product that is really easy to use but looks terrible is an example of great UX poor UI.
If you are looking to develop a world changing app with sights on scaling up, you should consider bringing on board such expertise as user retention remains key to app survival.