“Design” What did first pop into your mind? The visual part. Design is not only about the look and the feel but also the functionality. “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like Design is how it works.” perfectly quoted by Steve Job stresses the seriousness of having a good interaction design. The interaction design focuses on the overall user experience and satisfaction with a product.
But what exactly is interaction design? Is it a synonym for UX? What are the roles of interaction designers? We will walk you through these questions below.
What is Interaction Design?
Interaction design, abbreviated as IxD, refers to designing interactive digital products and services. There is no particular definition for interaction design; however, it refers to creating a dialogue between a person and a product, service, or system. This dialogue can be both emotional and physical. IxD examines the interaction using an interface between a design and users.
An interaction designer focuses on the way users interact with products using the principles of good communication to create desired UX.
Interaction Design & User Experience
Interaction design is sometimes interchangeably used with user experience design. This is because of an overlap between interaction design and UX design. User experience is all about shaping the overall experience of using a product. A significant part of the experience involves the interaction of a user and a product. Therefore, IxD cannot be used synonymously with UX design. However, accounting for the closely related characteristics, B.Des course in UX design can also land you a job as an interaction designer.
Interaction Design and UX Design is homogeneously used in cultural discourse. Undoubtedly, the two disciplines of the design world share several characteristics. UX design is a broader concept encompassing multiple design aspects of a user’s journey on a platform, system, software, or application. UX design includes UI design, communication design, interaction design, application design, information architecture, etc.
The primary goal of a UX designer is to understand its target users and design the product so that the user has a positive feeling while operating the same. UX designers can use a wide variety of techniques and disciplines to achieve this goal. In contrast, interaction designers are primarily concerned with the moment when a user interacts with a product. The objective of an interactive design is to improve the interactive experience.
The critical difference between a UX design and an interaction design lies in how one thinks about user interactions. Interaction designers are dedicated to enhancing the moment when a user interacts with a product. For UX designers, a moment of interaction is a small part of the user’s journey while interacting with a product.
Although interaction design and UX design are connected, creating good interaction design in user experience isolation is rarely possible. Interaction design can be considered as a spoke in the umbrella of user experience. In other words, without IxD, there is no UX design.
Role of an interaction designer
After knowing the difference between UX design and IxD, you might still wonder, “What is the role of an interaction designer?” As a distinct role, interaction designers only exist in large organisations. The responsibilities of interaction design in a small scale organisation are distributed between UI and UX designers.
Here are two significant areas where the impact of an interaction designer is substantial:
● Design strategy - They build a system based on the analysis of the target user and finding interactions that can help achieve the goals.
● Prototyping - Interaction designers create prototypes to lay out the interactions. This is done to make interactions evident for the user.
Digital design is a conversation. This conversation takes place between a machine and a person. The like button on Facebook helps analyse the user interaction and display the relevant product based on their likes and dislikes. Looking at the future aspects, if you are aspiring for a design course, you can go for B.Des Interaction Design to land into a futureproof field.
Published by Neha Kaul