To make a mole hill out of a mountain : challenges in designing a recognizable GUI for an e-newspaper service on small screen devices
The purpose of this study was to: obtain and review guidelines for designing on a small screen
from several theoretic sources and to purpose own guidelines for this context. There was
chosen for the development of 3 different prototypes meant for the use on 3 different mobile
devices. Those mobile devices had a different screen size and were: an e-reader, PDA and
mobile phone. The prototypes provided the user with a future e-newspaper service (a TV
First design principles for good usability on small screens were abstracted from literature.
With this knowledge the three prototypes were developed. The development started with
writing down the functional and user requirements for the prototypes. After that the
developing process had two stages. The first stage was a low-fidelity prototype, this were
sketches of the graphical user interface that was commented by users. The second stage was
a high-fidelity prototype, this stage consisted of three fully functional prototypes. The three
different prototypes were used in a user evaluation. After the evaluation interviews with the
users took place to obtain additional information.
In this research the main question was: “What are the challenges for designing the
(graphical) user interface, as a part of an e-newspaper service which is aimed at use on
multiple devices with heterogeneous screen sizes, to be recognized as the same service?”.
The results from this research are three challenges in designing the (graphical) user interface
for devices with small screens. These challenges are: how to make the user recognize the
service in the software (recognition of service), how to develop one service on multiple
devices (use on multiple devices) and how to develop software that it is useful and pleasant
to use (usable software). In total fifteen guidelines derived from theory were found, this
research shows that thirteen of them are applicable when designing for small screens. Three
of those thirteen are reformulated in this study to make them fit better in the context. Next to
this, seven additional guidelines were proposed in this study. Examples of the purposed
guidelines are: reconstruct the layout from the non-digital service in the interface as much as
possible, explore the targeted user group, built further on their mental model and pay
attention to possible disabilities of the group, implement extra’s that give users a good reason
to use the service and make it easy for the user to select the sought information.
AT THIS PAGE YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE WHOLE ESSAY. (follow the link to the next page)