July 20, 2012
The popular note-taking app Evernote recently released a GUI design update that tweaks previous changes made in May for its Android tablet app. The 4.1 update improves visibility on larger screens and introduces swipe interaction and a number of other changes.
For tablet users, the application design update provides a massive improvement over version 4.0, which made the tablet edition look like a "blown-up version of its small-screen equivalent," according to MobileSyrup. With a more swipe-friendly design and new features like sublists and linking to Evernote Hello and Food, the app also provides increased usability.
The announcement was made on Evernote's blog, with screenshots and a list of the new improvements. One major change was the new Tablet List View, specifically designed for larger screens. This option provides users with expanded information about a note, such as tags, location, attachments and more.
For users, the most important change may be the addition of swipe functionality, allowing them to slide notebook panels in, switch easily to full-screen mode and take advantage of overall navigation improvements. Additionally, the update provides new sublists for both tablet and smartphone users, allowing users to further categorize their notes with additional levels. A slideshow mode was also added for previewing notes.
The updated device interface development provides users with not only improved usability, but a cleaner UI as well. For designers, this is an important part of creating an app, as it improves the overall user experience. With application design, this is vital for not only creating a high-quality app, but a highly successful one. Other apps have been criticized in the past for appearing blocky or blown-up on the larger screen of tablets, a flaw when developers think a smartphone app will work with no changes on other mobile devices.
This problem has recently come up with the switch to Retina displays as well, with designers beginning to recognize the challenge inherent in graphical user interface design for two different standard resolutions. Developing different versions of an app for phones and tablets is just as important as developing for two different screen resolutions, and can make a major difference in not only the usability of the app, but its popularity as well.