Experience Design Essentials: Animated Microinteractions In Mobile Apps

Jakob Nielsen’s first heuristic for UI design states:The system should always keep users informed about what is going on, through appropriate feedback in a reasonable time. This means that the user interface should keep the user abreast of what is happening by providing feedback. The app shouldn’t keep the user guessing — it should tell the user what’s happening, and microinteractions can help you make that known via appropriate visual feedback.

Data uploading and downloading processes are great opportunities for creative animated microinteractions.

Another well-known animation for this group is “pull down to refresh,” which initiates a process of content updates on mobile devices. A cheerful refresh animation can make users chuckle.

Takeaway: Animation provides real-time notification of an app’s process status, enabling the user to quickly understand what is going on.