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I was recently interviewed by Business News Daily on the popularity and trends in the Tablet app market, and one of the questions asked was why the tablet app industry is so popular right now.

A Seismic Shift

Of course there are too many dimensions to this questions, but I’d like to go into one facet briefly: The tablet based delivery channel matters because it represents not only a new technology meme, but seismic shift from current computing experiences and practices. It is the harbinger of more liberating ways of interaction with computers, information and entertainment. Pediction: These trends will continue to fully take shape in the next 10 years, but the tablet experience is the first instance of this future right here and now, and people want a part of it, with a completely new interactive and gesture enabled way of computing, completely new usage scenarios and use cases, completely new interfaces. In short: It is all about a new user experience that is self-directed, intuitive, integrates with your life.

The “mobile aspect” is important for things other than just mobility. Mobile is important because it creates and leads to the user experiences of the future. Read more

I’ve really come to appreciate the 5 second usability test:

[one_half]Conducting these 5 second tests for our recently launched iPad helped a lot in getting user feedback on the look and feel and iconography. This tried and true UX exercise may at first glance seems like a lot of work to set up, but the 5 second site makes it ridiculously easy: IN the app development process it helped develop personas, and gave us direct feedback on how users perceived icons in the app store, allowed us to get a handle on what people thought of the look and feel, and what conceptual associations they made with the images and page layouts used.[/one_half]

[one_half_last][box type=”info”]There are two basic test types the 5 second site allows: A 5 second test to pick from a choice of designs that at first glance are more appealing, and a click test that displays a heat map of where users clicked the most. The mock up’s ewere easy enough to create: We took screenshots from the iTunes app store, and randomly overlayed our own icon designs. Then we asked people a range of questions.[/box][/one_half_last]

Concepts for our latest iPad app icons

You can try it, if you have 5 seconds to spare:

Click on the image to launch a five second test!