Demographics and User Experience Design

It is hard to believe that smartphones have been with us only for ten years, it feels like they are around forever. As smartphones intuitively changed everything about how we interact with the world being inclusive becomes more important than ever. The digital world doesn't belong to a selective few anymore. And everyone wants to be part of it. Let's think about how we can increase the inclusiveness of the technology:

  • Native citizens of the digital world: Kids. Today's little kids were born to a world of voice UIs. If you can get them included in your ecosystem early on your users' average lifetime will be automatically increase at least 10 years! Although it comes with some legal restrictions, e.g. COPPA, they are great investment to collect the fruits in long term.
  • Although we want to connect all the people on the planet the illiteracy rate is 17% today. Even we can make all people online today without proper usage of voice UIs we cannot get the benefit out of it.
  • Cultural aspect of the translations on the applications is important. In my natural language (Turkish) call-to-actions like "click here" sounds weird and sometimes even offensive to the older people. No matter how many times I explained my mom asks me "why this wants me to click it".

As we progress on engineering the user experiences we'll hit limits, getting over them may be being more inclusive of different groups. However being inclusive may sometimes mean being "divisive". We must be open minded to test our products with different cultures and age groups to provide the best possible experience because "the best" probably differs from one demographic to another.