Elderly users’ problem when opening camera on Screen lock

normal interface for screen lock

Nowadays youngsters get used to the new features of interface more easily than the elders. For example, here are some normal interfaces for screen lock. And there are a lot of widgets for instant accesses. Young people will soon learn how to access these features either by clicking, swiping or sliding. However, I find elderly people have some problem on that. I notice that my father used to click on the camera icon and find it not working. Then he tries to unlock the screen and do one more step to find the camera function. It happens that his phone supports swiping for opening camera on screen lock instead of simple clicking. But he didn’t find much help for the sudden enlarging circle, which is supposed to imply its users to swipe to open.

  • Efficiency The UI enables users to perform an action with a minimum amount of effort. If the intention is clear, the UI delivers the expected results the first time so that users don’t have to repeat the action (perhaps with variations) to get what they want.
  • Responsiveness The UI gives clear, immediate feedback to indicate that the action is happening, and was either successful or unsuccessful.

I find the main problem is not the efficiency but the responsiveness, for we won’t receive any clear instructions or help when we fail to open it. And since it should be intuitive to open when placed on the screen, so people tend to think is there some problem for the icon not responding. Since elderly users sometimes don’t believe or understand the “intuitive” instructions designed for most people, it is more probable for them to ignore the more efficient way of accessing and rely on the old way.

My thought is that interface should take serious considerations for responsiveness, especially when users fail to understand some features, more instructions should be provided.

Bibliography: http://www.uxdesignedge.com/2010/06/intuitive-ui-what-the-heck-is-it/

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