Friday, August 02, 2013

Coffee and UX

Sometimes, user interface changes can result in unexpected user experience impact.

The office coffee machine broke down last week, and was promptly replaced.

From this

it became this

Essentially it is the same machine, but instead of having analog knobs, it has a number of buttons.

The problem is: not everyone has the same taste in coffee

Whereas before, regardless of whether the previous person likes a strong espresso or a watered-down coffee, I could always go up to the machine and twist the two knobs (controlling strength and volume) without thinking to get my perfect coffee, now I have to click, on average, six times before the machine understands what I want!

I am thinking: user test your product in real-life situation...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's a classic case of something that looks better on the marketing material, but makes the device practically much more annoying to use. Example misfeature: the display on the machine also has a clock, which is predestined to have the wrong time on it – whose kitchen needs another clock? A pox on the product managers who fall for this kind of featuritis.

I wonder if we could somehow intercept the newfangled electronic gadgets and buttons and wire up a pair of knobs via an Arduino to reinstate the old interface…

see wah cheng said...

LOL I did not even notice that the display also has a clock until you mentioned it (and I had my coffee this moring)!

Finn Felton said...

A classic case of something that looks better on the marketing material, but makes the device practically much more annoying to use.

Thanks
Finn Felton

Kopi Luwak