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Unleashing the Potential of AR & VR: 6 UX Principles for Augmented Reality

AR has been gathering popularity in the last few years, with increasing the scope of Artificial reality, the demand for skilled AR VR user experience designers is also higher. To make the most out of AR and VR industry you need to learn a few key concepts about AR and VR design, especially the user experience in VR/AR application

Why User experience in AR and VR is different then mobile user experience –

Thanks to AR (augmented reality) new dimensions are created, breaking the norms of typical 2D flat screens in mobiles and desktops. Designing in 3D is different than designing in 2D. Designing for augmented reality has opened newer opportunities for innovation, but to achieve this designers need to tackle a few hurdles.


Augmented reality is far from perfect in today’s scenario, despite the huge investment of workforce and money in this new technology the user response has been poor till now.
There are quite a few factors to look for in this scenario.

  1. Poor execution of the concept
  2. Bad user experience
  3. Huge expectations but Not so great reality

What should a UX Designer do in this case? you may ask, there are 7 things a UX Designer can do to improve the user experience in the VR and AR Industry. Integrating UX principles in AR and VR can help solve this problem. In this blog, we will be discussing 7 UX principles that can be integrated into the AR and VR industry to help grow the adaptation of the AR by masses.
User experience is not just about the software part but the hardware side too, for example, while designing AR and VR devices product designers must focus on user comfort while wearing the devices by making the devices lightweight.

Unleashing the Potential of AR & VR: 6 UX Principles for Augmented Reality

Understanding UX Design for Augmented Reality

The smooth integration of the AR experience with the physical world is ensured by the UX design method.

UX design for VR and AR offers different states of challenges, if you are entering a whole new world or integrating the interface into your world software optimization does matter.


Empathizing with the consumer gets impotent when it comes to designing an interface, a designer must relate to the problem that the user is facing, trying out the product as a user using the service to experience the pros and cons by yourself can help you find the nuances of user problem you won’t find by either way.

Real estate – With availability of wide amount of real estate to utilize to make your product more immersive which is a limitation in flat screen design, This way Designer can create software that are specially made for the concept of Augmented reality, for example a virtual teacher with whom you can practice yoga or a virtual get-to-gathers for friends or relatives then face timing or meeting on zoom.

Empathizing with the consumer is important when it comes to designing an interface, a designer must relate to the problem that the user is facing, trying out the product as a user using the service to experience the pros and cons by yourself can help you find the nuances of user problem you won’t find by either way.

Real estate – With the availability of a wide amount of real estate to utilize to make your product more immersive which is a limitation in flat screen design, This way Designer can create software that is specially made for the concept of Augmented reality, for example a virtual teacher with whom you can practice yoga or a virtual get-to-gathers for friends or relatives then face timing or meeting on zoom.

Immersive environment for viewing pleasure – A user can have theater like experience from his living room.

Limitations of Augmented-Reality Products

This technology is still a futuristic dream lacking proper execution and public intent, adaptation of Augmented reality or Virtual reality is not that great in terms of numbers. Peoples are still not moving away from flat screen concept.

There are several reason why people are not ready to adapt or try Virtual reality

  1. Hardware requirement – VR require high processing power which require better hardware then mobile devices which results in increasing the cost.
  2. User Adaptation – Because of high prices of the VR sets less people are buying the products.
  3. Poor software experience – AR and VR technologies are in development stage and currently not that impressive.

6 Augmented-Reality Design Principles

An augmented-reality experience is spatial, so developers must consider the real-world environment when developing a product.

Now that we’ve considered the challenges of UX design for augmented-reality development, let’s look at how you can overcome such issues by sticking to six core design principles.

1. Integration of both the worlds

An augmented reality experience is different and can be much immersive and vivid, to make this happen you may need to take care of few crucial things.

  • Intimate space is about the parts of our body that we use a lot, like our face and hands. For example, when we use filters on apps like Snapchat, it changes how our face looks. And when we wear special glasses that show things on our eyes, it can track our hand movements.
  • Personal space means the area around us where things and people are close by. For example, when we play games on a table with special technology, we can see virtual objects on the table and play with other people nearby.
  • Social space becomes important when the camera can get really close to people in different places. This is helpful when playing a game with other people or when trying to find important things.
  • Public space is a large area where people can use special apps on their devices to see things that aren’t really there. Sometimes these apps can even show pretend things on big buildings, like the Mumol Museum in Vienna, Austria.

2. Use gestures more for navigation –

As you move your interface should move along with you to maintain proper interaction, in AR and VR the touch interaction will not work so as a UI UX designer you need to find out ways to interact with interface.

While using VR the user will move and designers need to take care of the interface and how will user interact with it, user will need to perform touch or various other interactions

for example: swipes, drag and drop, touch and hold, zoom in and zoom out designers should make this interaction feel familiar to the users, this will help reducing the learning curve for the user.

Hand movement such as pinch gesture, hold and release index finger pointing and virtual keyboard can help you solve the interaction problem.

While using the AR device the user have very less access to its actual surrounding so making sure to use sensors and other software features to protect any accident while using VR set.

User should be worried when he is too close to other person or he is about to collide to a wall. all this while letting user enjoy the immersive environment to the fullest!

3. Planning for User Onboarding

This principle relates to delineating the steps that users need to take to make a product ready for use, thereby ensuring maximum usability. It includes establishing product requirements and defining the technical limitations of whatever device people are using.

Devices with built-in Li-DAR sensors can easily handle most elements of AR, but other devices may require more onboarding. This could take the form of an instruction manual or a pop-up Help menu. Also provide Help documentation for tracking algorithms, where hints may be necessary to point the user in the right direction. For example, an outline of an object might prompt users to align their vision with that object.

If you plan to monetize your app, you should also ensure Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance, as well as adhere to other important regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

4. Having a Reason for Integrating AR

Integrating AR won’t necessarily offer a better experience. Integrated AR must actually be useful and add value to the product, offering the user a new, worthwhile experience.

It is always a mistake to implement augmented reality just because you can. Although many developers are keen to get in on the action, integrating AR won’t necessarily offer a better experience. Integrated AR must actually be useful and add value to the product, offering the user a new, worthwhile experience.

5. Designing User Interactions

  • tapping to select
  • dragging the center of objects to translate them
  • dragging the edge of objects to rotate them
  • pinching to zoom in and out.

If you’re making something that people will use on a tablet, try to avoid making them use their fingers too much because tablets are usually held with both hands. Using simple logic like this can make it easier for people to use your thing on any device.

6. Integrating AR into the User Interface

The product’s user interface (UI) should combine both a traditional layout and augmented-reality features.

The last principle on our list is that the product’s user interface (UI) should combine both a traditional layout and augmented-reality features. The designer must find the perfect balance between focusing on creating an immersive AR experience from the beginning and providing a simple user interface that users can quickly understand and that functions well.

Conclusion

Augmented reality is a cool technology that can make apps and software even better. But, it’s not easy to make. You have to follow some rules to make sure it works well and people like it. UX designers have to think about how mesometanephrically and make it othemorrheas to understand and use.They also have to make sure the buttons and menus are easy to use and that the design doesn’t have any mistakes.

Learn more about this topic –

https://www.mattschaeferdesign.com/designing-in-vr

https://developer.apple.com/design/human-interface-guidelines/designing-for-visionos

https://developer.apple.com/design/human-interface-guidelines

https://developers.google.com/ar/design

By Hrushikesh Paygavhan

UX designer at Customer Capital. With 7+ years of Design experience, I belive in passing the knowledge to everyone. I help UX designers upskill themselves, and stay updated in the design field.

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