iPad UX Review: Adobe Ideas vs. SketchBook Pro

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User experience review of two sketching iPad apps--Adobe Ideas & Autodesk SketchBook Pro--that launched in April 2010. Best viewed in full screen mode.

Text of iPad UX Review: Adobe Ideas vs. SketchBook Pro

  • 1. Adobe Ideas vs. Autodesk SketchBook Pro: iPad App UX Review @suzanneginsburg www.iphoneuxreviews.com 1

2. Thanks for your interest! Please switch to full-screen view for optimal viewing. 2 3. UX Review Goals Review design strategies & patternsemerging among sketching iPad apps. Used to indicate best Suggest which of the above arepracticeworking well & which could useimprovement (Note color coding toright). Used to indicate area that can be improved The goal is not to suggest that oneapp is better than the other.3 4. Some Caveats... The two apps were designed with different goals in mind: Adobe Ideas is for basic sketching where SketchBook Pro (as its name implies) is much more powerful and can be used by serious artists. Although the target users and goals are arguably different, I still found the comparison useful since I was focusing primarily on the UI and flows. The review does not compare feature sets in great depth. Finally, kudos to both products for their fine work! 4 5. Brief app intros5 6. About Adobe Ideas Launched when iPad came out in April 2010. Allows users to sketch & save ideas. Provides basic layering & ability to import photos. Users can share sketches via email (can later be edited in Illustrator). - Version 1.0 is in this review. - #3 in Free Entertainment category as of May 1, 2010.6 7. About SketchBook Pro Also launched when iPad came out in April 2010. Provides many brush options. Includes more advanced layering capabilities. Users can export photos to a variety of formats. Also available on desktop & iPhone.- Version 1.0.1 is in this review- #2 in Paid Entertainment category as of May 1, 2010.7 8. UX Review ScopeNot all flows & screens were reviewed. The review includes: Toolbar organization & interaction Brush palette Layers approach Management UI Save, edit, and delete flows And a few other interesting areas...8 9. Screen-by-screen UX review9 10. New User Experience SketchBook how to is Adobe helpful but Ideas should should also provide basic provide clear how to info way to skip. for new users. Unfortunately the user is dumped into a blank screen when the tour is done. Better to display toolbar at first.10 11. Toolbar Organization PencilUndo/redo Brush options Layer optionsshould be closer to its size widget below. Groupingswork butcould usesubtle visualcues toreinforcegroupings & Layers should be closer to create more drawing tools; it gets losthierarchy, near email. Icon also unclear. e.g., brushcould bebigger. 11 12. Hiding the Toolbar Toolbar Toolbar doesntdisappears automatically go when user away; can hide bystarts tapping x. drawing.Might be Tapping thisgood for little dot bringsexperienced the toolbar back.users but Nice when youhard for new know its there:users. took me hours to discover! Instead, I used the awkward 3 finger gesture. 12 13. Brush Palette Brush size previewnice, though subtle. Brush preview very powerful. Color & Brush opacity editedproperties in separate edited in one modes.place. Opacity % covered as user moves their finger up and down. 13 14. Layers Familiar delete &reorder interaction. Only two layers areallowed, unless Im missingthe option for more. Deleteoutcome unclear(photo is deleted). 14 15. Management Screen Neither app lets users reorder or group sketches. Should group items that let Tools forusers act on selected sketch (3 creating new contentwith red) & those for new content. are grouped together. 15 16. Key Flows: Save, Delete, Edit 16 17. Save Flow Save only shownwhen user tries to addnew item or go to gallery.If saving required, thenthe option should be Auto-saved: more evident. appropriate for this app though maybe not for SketchBook. 17 18. Management: Edit FlowStep 2. Tap edit Step 1. Choose sketch Two One step:steps feels tap to view/edit like a lot justto view/edit the sketch.18 19. Management: Delete Flow1. Choose delete 3 steps to 3. Choose photodelete.Choose photo1. Choose photothen action. 3. Confirm delete 4 steps to delete. Choose action then photo. 2. View 4. Confirm delete instructions (# updated)2. Choose action 19 20. A couple of neat things...20 21. Adobe Ideas: Color Extraction Adobe Ideas lets you choose a photo from your collection and extract the colors. The colors can then be used when creating sketches. As you can see, I created a pretty nice palette. Even better would be the ability to move those circles around to change the palette.21 22. SketchBook Pro: Brush Properties Once a user becomes familiar with it, the Brush Properties widget can be very powerful. The key is to make it easier to learn. Personally, I found myself gravitating to the toolbar. Over time, Im sure I could get the hang of it. They have something like this on their iPhone app.22 23. Recommendations 23 24. Recommendations1. Provide a quick how to to help users get started.2. Show where controls live before hiding them, e.g., show the controls, thenslide them out of view 3. Gradually introduce novice users to shortcuts.4. Make sure the users finger doesnt cover relevant content or UI.5. Group related tools, e.g., canvas vs. brush options.6. Streamline task flows as much as possible; keep user in context.7. Use familiar interactions, e.g., from iPhone, if they work well on the iPad.24 25. Thanks for viewing! Thats all for now! There are many other notable design details but Id like tokeep these reviews relatively short. Suggestions for future reviews are welcome. Please sendemail to suggest@iphoneuxreviews.com25 26. Buy my book on Amazon:Designing the iPhone User Experience @suzanneginsburgwww.iphoneuxreviews.com