I love seeing how mobile ux designers rethink and look at existing OS and how it could be improved. Recently this concept video of live tiles appeared on the web that showed a widget / live tile version of iOs for iPhone / iPad.
When windows developed live tiles, it was a shock, but it made sense. People wanted access to their content faster. The buttons to access those feeds were really just a formality. However, hitting those buttons were a legacy interaction that was baked into the system, but also expectations of how a UI was “supposed” to work.
It has been universally agreed upon that as many user experiences are based on feeds, that it starts to make more sense for UI elements to simply be viewing windows of data rather then buttons that view that data – skip a step, right? There are many ways to express this. I personally believe that the windows phone UI was a very elegant solution to this, however it is worth noting that Android introduced some widgets that addressed this early on as well. Not everyone agreed this was a good solution, but many people have embraced it.
Apple is currently using push notifications to bring feeds to your screen while asleep. In essence, it performs the same utility, but with a less sexy interface. The design question at hand is at what point in the mobile experience do you want to access what type of data? Both have advantages.
Where I am fascinated by this suggested UX idea, I am even more interested in the areas where IP law overlap with Mobile UX. Even if this solution maybe be better for a significant amount of users, there starts to be areas where a manufacturer cannot go due to threat of infractions on another companies idea or IP. Even if people love this, apple may not be able to innovate here in fear of legal action from Samsung or Microsoft.
I question as creator, are there areas where the law should not limit the evolution of design progress. I understand the need to protect an artists work, but I also fear that legal can in some instances prevent UI from growing, thus decreasing overall utility of an entire system / generation? I am not a lawyer, but its a very interesting debate, in many verticals and progressions. At some point, lessons learned should be shared with the greater group if they benefit all users.
Even though I have a few critiques for this specific design solution, I applaud any designer who puts their work out there for the public to judge. We need creators more then ever in this time of automation and optimization. We always need both, but new ideas are rare, even if they are heavily influenced or recycled. The first step is to attempt to create something of value and improve the human condition.