Creating Human-centric Designs for your Products

Creating Human-centric Designs for your Products

Technology, medicine, commerce, automobile, finance, have all incorporated design as a crucial part of their industry. The importance of design in the production and manufacturing industry has led there to be a major emphasis on the human-centric design of products.

Most of us use these products in our day-to-day lives, the design of them, however, we tend to overlook.

What is human-centric design?

The designing of it, however, we tend to overlook.

Human-centric design is all about developing a product with the end-user in mind. One of the main aspects of human-centric design is ‘empathy’.

The idea is to make a product that fits the needs of the users rather than the users having to adjust to the product.

Can you think of products around you right now that were designed keeping human-centricity in mind?

In this article, we will go over a few examples of products we have all used at some point in our lives.

To each product, we will add a layer of human-centricity to see what it gives us.

What is empathy in design?

Well, that’s the dictionary definition.

But what does empathy mean when it comes to design?

We’re glad you asked.

Empathy in design is looking at a problem from the user’s perspective while creating a product in a way that best serves the end-users.

It is empathy that turns an ordinary product into an extraordinary one.

What is the product?

Spectacles

What was the problem?

Spectacles have solved a crucial problem of helping see clearly, for those that don’t have perfect vision.

However, with increasing dependence on technology, our eyes are subject to screen time more than ever before.

With the exposure to blue light from the displays of our devices, our eyes are affected and can lead to a variety of adverse effects.

The problem was simple, too much screen time with not much that we could do about it.

Human-Centric Design Solution

As discussed, the idea behind design thinking is to look at a problem from a user’s perspective and come up with solutions to those problems.

Going by the same principle, an addition was made for spectacles too.

The blue block technology.

With the addition of empathy, what served as a product that helped see clearly for those with imperfect vision, is now a product that also blocks blue light emitted from our devices.

What is the product?

Shoes

What was the problem?

We all have our favorite shoe brand/s and some of us are willing to pay a premium to buy our favorite pair.

Well, what if someone loved a brand. Found a designer pair that they liked. But couldn’t buy it because they were physically handicapped to tie the laces.

For people living with a range of conditions, from autism to dyspraxia, cerebral palsy to hemiplegia, and many more, tying shoelaces can often mean getting help from someone.

Human-Centric Design Solution

Here’s where Nike came in.

Nike decided to make FlyEasy, a designer pair of shoes but without shoe laces.

Shoes that you can step in and out of without the use of hands.

So just like there are products that adopt human-centric designing, there are also digital products that do that.

The implementation may seem different, but the core idea remains the same.

The idea of human-centric designing.

Lets consider the ‘Like’ button on Facebook for instance.

The like button started as a simple way of appreciating a post that was shared by someone.

The idea was simple, and so was the design.

And with time, and the addition of human centricity, we don’t just have a single ‘like’ button anymore.

We have an addition of human emotions along with just a thumb-up:

Pinterest. Another common platform for pictures that millions of people use around the world.

Can you guess the human-centric design element in Pinterest?

Pinterest identified this problem and decided to address it.

Does this look familiar?

This button saves the post to a board that you can create based on categories and pin the post.

It was influenced by the concept of having a physical board in front of us and pinning things to it.

Just that here, you can have multiple boards and pin as many ever posts as you want.

This feature too was added as a human-centric element

These examples illustrate the importance of empathy in designing products.

It is a crucial element in deciding how the product will be accepted by the users.

It forms the basis of the product.

A lot of products around you are designed with empathy at their core.

Can you think of more such products?

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