In today’s ever-changing digital landscape, UX and UI designers have to be ready for the impact of sudden and dramatic technological changes.
In order to keep up with the constant stream of digital innovation, it is prudent for designers to research and plan for the disruption that may be caused by new and emerging technologies.
In this blog, we’ll be looking at some examples of disruptive technologies that are having an effect on the work of digital designers, as well as some exciting – and potentially paradigm changing – future technologies.
NEW TECHNOLOGIES: FROM EMERGING TO EVERYDAY
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll be aware of the exciting technologies that have been emerging in recent years, including Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR / VR), the Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI).
It’s easy to look to these trends with anticipation and forget that most of the technologies that we use in our everyday lives were initially seen as uncertain and exciting emerging technologies.
The progression of technology from innovation to everyday use is known as the Emerging Tech Life Cycle.
EMERGING TECH LIFE CYCLE
From new and exciting to commonplace and unexceptional.
- Innovation Peak:
A technological breakthrough leads to significant interest and research in a new technology
- Expectation Peak:
A rapid peak of public opinion and excitement as the new technology is developed and publicised
- Trough of Disillusionment:
Commercialisation of the product and collective realisation that it isn’t necessarily as life-changing as anticipated
- Slope of Enlightenment:
Commercialisation of product takes hold in certain industries and the product becomes normalised
- Plateau of Productivity:
The technology has become integrated to the point of common, everyday use.
While business owners and the public debate the risks and benefits of these emerging technologies, designers are preparing for the new user interfaces that these technologies will require.
LOOKING FORWARD: THOUGHT CONTROL AND HOLOGRAMS
This section of the blog might seem like science-fiction to some readers, but the technologies discussed have been heavily researched and could realistically materialise in the next decade or so.
One exciting example could be the rise of Brain-Computer Interfaces, which will allow users to interact with computers and other devices using thought alone. Much like the rise of ‘gesture’ interactions that touchscreen technology brought with it, Brain-Computer Interfaces could give way to a whole new brain-wave of interactions to design for…
Pun definitely intended.
And software innovations aren’t the only new technologies that designers will have to look out for.
Volumetric displays – or holograms as they’re more commonly known – represent another exciting and potentially paradigm shifting technology for designers. If sufficiently implemented, this technology could be much more than science fiction; it could end up replacing computing displays and making standard hardware like keyboards and mice obsolete.
Changing the way that users experience computers and mobiles would provide a brand new challenge for a lot of stakeholders, but none more so than designers.
The last 20 or so years have seen a boom in digital innovation, creating new and exciting platforms for UX and UI designers to work with.
As new technologies continue emerge, new interfaces and experiences have to be created to support them. At JBi, we know the importance of preparing for these advances, and our designers are ready to embrace the technology that we now see as science fiction.
Who knows, we might all be viewing this blog inside a contact lense by the time it’s published.
If you are looking for support on your digital project – whether it’s AR, VR, or just a good old website build! – please don’t hesitate to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org