Friday, June 04, 2010

Nielsen's word on iPad Usability - the first Report

Usability and the iPad - the battle between "defending usability conventions" and "promoting cutting-edge design innovation" had begun.

Nielsen Norman Group has recently released
a free-to-download report on the usability of iPad applications.

A brief observation: most of the usability findings reported seem reasonable, but they also appear at times too focussed on minor (wrong?) issues of the user experience, which is actually enhanced and driven by cutting-edge design innovation unleashed by the iPad (i.e. in the iPhone paradigm).
The iPad is targeted to users who are willing and/or experienced to explore, learn new interaction paradigms, and greatly adapt to innovative interfaces. Pushing too much on the infringment of the "traditional" usability conventions (which are contingent, and always changing) does not provide much insight at this point and risks just to hinder the power of design innovation.