Mobile Design Trends: Visual

Michaela Markley Picture

by Michaela Markley | Last Updated: Feb 24, 2020

Previously, during our mobile design trend blog series we’ve spoken about navigation, interaction, personalization, and now we’re highlighting visual trends. Consumers are spending so much time looking at their screens that it’s critical we create an experience that doesn't damage their eyes (hello dark mode!) and is engaging to look at. Let’s look at a few of the visual mobile trends you need to consider.

We’re Going Dark

Many of us have used or at least seen dark mode. I don’t go out of my way to use dark mode on specific apps, but I did notice my Honda CRV automatically chooses light or dark mode on the audio touchscreen based on the amount of light outside! And I LOVE it! Dark mode was created to reduce eye strain, provide comfort for night or dark environments, and help with battery life. The white text on a dark background reduces eye strain in dark environments while also meeting the color contrast ratios required for readability. Twitter is one of the leading apps that brought dark mode to life for its users. Twitter went one step further and even offered a dim mode, which provides the background elements to be grey instead of black. Many users are opting in for this more eyesight-friendly dark mode option!

Think Bolder

Have you recently looked into a 4K television because you’ve heard how amazing the resolution is? My in-laws have been speaking non-stop about wanting a 4K TV and funny enough they recently won one in a raffle! The mobile environment has become just as competitive with displays becoming capable of higher pixel densities (hello, Apple’s Retina display and Sony’s Xperia Z5 Premium). Higher pixel densities means higher resolution and depth of color! This means your team can start leaning into more advanced display tech with the use of gradients and bolder colors. Hulu has taken full advantage of these capabilities on their mobile app and has been able to use gradients and bolder colors to enhance their customers' experience with a better UI.

It’s The Little Things

The small details matter. There’s no doubt that content and navigation are priority when designing a mobile experience, but the little extras in-between sometimes make all the difference. We love Duolingo’s fun use of animations throughout their app. Animation is a great example of taking what could have been just a static photo and going one step further in making an animated graphic come to life. There are many options to add a little sparkle to your app - animations, interactive photos, personalization, and more. Just remember to keep the design simple enough that consumers don’t need to learn a new gesture or habit.

Keeping these mobile design trends on the top of mind is crucial when creating your next app. Whether you are thinking about navigation, interaction, personalization, or visual; you can find all the key takeaways we’ve shared over this series on the mobile design trends swipe file.

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