This guy Michael Heilemann is absolutely killing it with his critiquing of iOS 7.

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
In all of these posts here, it's as if he's reading my mind:

http://binarybonsai.com/blog?tag=iOS+7

I too am genuinely concerned for Apple. In the first 10 seconds I knew the new lock screen was a mess. It's something I feel Jobs wouldn't have signed off on. I know I wouldn't. Yes, they had deadlines, but removing the top and bottoms arrows to stop confusion from complexity from arising, and adding some kind of arrow to show the unlock direction are frighteningly obvious decisions.

The lock screen in iOS 7 is basically worse in every way than the lock screen in iOS 6. That's a major problem. It's complex, confusing, unintuitive, and quite frankly: badly designed.

John Gruber called Michael Heilemann criticism "Some of the best criticism of iOS 7’s design that I’ve seen", and I couldn't agree more.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    No one interested in discussing how accurate and perhaps revelatory this guy's criticisms are?
  • Reply 2 of 23
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    See, when I do this, I'm vilified and called an Apple hater. But when anyone else brings up points like this, it's "perfectly valid discussion". And then I'm Steve Jobs' Personal Masturbator for defending Apple against [I]them[/I].

    That these responses cover both ends of the spectrum tells me nothing more than that my opinion is probably right, so I guess it works out, but still... :D

    There's plenty about iOS 7 I don't like, and plenty I do. Their willingness to call it a work in progress will (should) result in the killing off of a fair bit of this bland nonsense before launch, replaced with something actually skeuomorphic. You know, something a human would actually want to use.

    We'll have to see what DP2 has in store.
  • Reply 3 of 23
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,625moderator
    ireland wrote: »
    It's something I feel Jobs wouldn't have signed off on. I know I wouldn't.

    You should try contacting Apple's board to see if they'd make you CEO. (it's hard to make out but the punctuation there is upside down)

    A lot of things were 'signed off' while Steve was around too like the Game Center UI and the leather calendars. Someone could say the exact opposite e.g 'this is exactly the kind of UI Steve would have signed off' and it would hold just has much weight. He isn't the decision maker now.

    Loads of people were calling for Ive to correct every mistake they assumed Forstall made and this is the result. It has mostly good changes, some flawed and it isn't at the gold master yet (which is really when it's 'signed off').
    ireland wrote: »
    John Gruber called Michael Heilemann criticism "Some of the best criticism of iOS 7’s design that I’ve seen", and I couldn't agree more.

    You have to remember that it's free. What kind of quality do you expect from a free update? Maybe what they need to do is start charging for updates like they do with OS X to match the quality in 10.9. ;)

    That site you linked to spends about 5 or more A4 pages worth detailing about 4 main issues:

    - signal bars are circles, big deal
    - white doesn't show up on white
    - can't tell between states and actions
    - can't immediately tell swipe directions

    They can fix most of these issue pretty quickly. I don't think the signal bars are that big of a deal but they can have rounded rectangles or something. The white text just needs a really faint drop shadow:

    1000

    That's just a tiny black shadow at 10% opacity. I'd prefer higher opacity black panels with white text for clarity but they made a decision to blur backgrounds so that your chosen background adds to the color customisation of the UI.

    They used buttons before to distinguish actions and states. Having just text makes it harder but this is the same issue with OS X menus. Some menu options are actions, some are states that you only know are states when they have a tick next to them. As long as they don't do something unexpected, it's not a problem. Using bold isn't ideal because some text will inevitably be bold and others not just as part of the UI so perhaps they can have a shape next to states e.g faint or hollow circle for unselected, filled circle for selected (like the signal bars) and action text either just plain or has a different symbol to separate it from average text:

    1000

    Some things take time to get used to and this may be the case with swipe directions. I think making the screen slide was a good idea and the shimmer indicates the direction but the arrows would definitely confuse the issue. Perhaps they just need to put a control center icon to the left and get rid of the arrow, maybe add a basic slider:

    1000
  • Reply 4 of 23
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Marvin wrote: »
    Some things take time to get used to and this may be the case with swipe directions. I think making the screen slide was a good idea and the shimmer indicates the direction but the arrows would definitely confuse the issue. Perhaps they just need to put a control center icon to the left and get rid of the arrow, maybe add a basic slider:

    I hate that they changed it at all. I would have preferred an identical slider design with text matching the rest of the UI. Changing it makes me think they're either okay with the illegal invalidation of their patent or that they've even agreed with it.
  • Reply 5 of 23
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,625moderator
    I would have preferred an identical slider design with text matching the rest of the UI. Changing it makes me think they're either okay with the illegal invalidation of their patent or that they've even agreed with it.

    I think the reason for the change is the idea of layers. The way the old slider works is that the slider button has a start point and an end point. When the button is dragged to the end point, the lock screen splits into parts, the top animates up, the bottom animates down and the center fades out. Now, the lock screen is treated as a layer that has to be moved out the way as one element. You can't actually do that with a slider because the slider would have to move with the layer so the slider would be ornamental and then not behave as you'd expect unless they left the slider in the middle while the screen behind it slid out the way - right now, the UI only starts to slide out the way when you've completed the unlock . You might slide also the text instead.

    I definitely think the old style was more intuitive because young children don't understand what 'slide to unlock' means but they know what a latch looks like and Apple animates the icons coming in after unlocking it so it's not like they can't break some rules with their layer idea.

    This new method has the advantage that you don't have to hit the slider bar to unlock the phone, which is easier for long term use and probably if you are blind too. How does someone who is blind find the unlock slider?
  • Reply 6 of 23
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Marvin wrote: »
    I think the reason for the change is the idea of layers. The way the old slider works is that the slider button has a start point and an end point. When the button is dragged to the end point, the lock screen splits into parts, the top animates up, the bottom animates down and the center fades out. Now, the lock screen is treated as a layer that has to be moved out the way as one element.

    Ah, okay, that makes sense. And with that in mind, your idea for visual differentiation becomes even better.
    This new method has the advantage that you don't have to hit the slider bar to unlock the phone

    Never mind that all iPhones will eventually have that bottom strip of their screen lose touch sensitivity due to overuse¡! ;)
  • Reply 7 of 23
    jrcjrc Posts: 817member


    I'm not really an iOS user. I'm a Mac user. I think iOS should be its own company.

  • Reply 8 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    Marvin wrote: »
    You have to remember that it's free. What kind of quality do you expect from a free update?

    Weakest argument ever?
  • Reply 9 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    [quote name="Marvin" url="/t/158123/this-guy-michael-heilemann-is-absolutely-killing-it-with-his-critiquing-of-ios-7#post_2349033"]Some things take time to get used to and this may be the case with swipe directions. I think making the screen slide was a good idea and the shimmer indicates the direction but the arrows would definitely confuse the issue. Perhaps they just need to put a control center icon to the left and get rid of the arrow, maybe add a basic slider:

    [IMG ALT=""]http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/27135/width/300/height/1000[/IMG][/quote

    It's less intuitive than iOS 6, though. That's a problem. The shimmer indicates the direction? Please!

    And your solution is to add another icon to the screen and make the unlock slider even smaller?
  • Reply 10 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    I hate that they changed it at all. I would have preferred an identical slider design with text matching the rest of the UI. Changing it makes me think they're either okay with the illegal invalidation of their patent or that they've even agreed with it.

    I don't know about the patent stuff, but yes, the iOS 6 unlock UI was dramatically better designed.
  • Reply 11 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    jrc wrote: »
    I'm not really an iOS user. I'm a Mac user. I think iOS should be its own company.

    That makes little sense. Especially with all the new collaboration inside Apple and iCloud.
  • Reply 12 of 23
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,625moderator
    ireland wrote: »
    The shimmer indicates the direction? Please!

    That's what the guy you linked to was saying:

    "Of course you swipe from left to right, as you've always done. The text still has a shimmer animating across it"

    A shimmer that goes from left to right across a message that says slide to unlock acts as a directional indicator telling you to swipe from left to right to unlock the phone. Nowhere near as effective as a button with an arrow on it but it's still a visual indicator.
    ireland wrote: »
    And your solution is to add another icon to the screen and make the unlock slider even smaller?

    The noted problems in iOS 7 were the lack of a slider and the confusion with the arrow at the bottom so that solution adds a slider and removes the control center arrow.

    The slider doesn't work well anyway as long as they choose to animate the lock screen by dragging it out the way. They'd have to fade out the slider to become almost fully transparent at the end.

    They could get away with using an arrow:

    1000

    I'm in favour of the old method, I think it was an iconic part of iOS:

    1000
    1000
    1000
    1000
    1000

    The above images wouldn't work with the new design. It would look fine without the shading too:

    1000

    But, the old design is limited in that you can't drag the screen at any point other than the slider or it doesn't make sense. It would be faster and less error-prone to unlock the new way because you don't have to hit the slider. The minimal slider doesn't have a container (surrounding box) so they could have the circle move no matter where you dragged on screen and it still makes sense - the size of it isn't important.
  • Reply 13 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    Marvin wrote:

    But, the old design is limited in that you can't drag the screen at any point other than the slider or it doesn't make sense. It would be faster and less error-prone to unlock the new way because you don't have to hit the slider. The minimal slider doesn't have a container (surrounding box) so they could have the circle move no matter where you dragged on screen and it still makes sense - the size of it isn't important.

    I've heard of people taking their iOS 7 drvices from their pockets to check the time only to find their phone unlocked. So less prone to error is not necessarily accurate. The idea of that circle moving no matter where you drag seems wrong UX-wise. Your arrow idea is better, but I'm not entirely sure it's the best idea. And when there are notifications in iOS 7 you can no longer unlock across the entire screen which is inconsistent and will no doubt be confusing to some users. Again, I don't need this as a UX improvement. It could be argued it's better in theory, but it's worse in reality. It's more complicated, less predictable, and less intuitive. They should have just removed the gloss, adjusted the fonts and added the new CC shortcut and left out both suggestive arrows.
  • Reply 14 of 23
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post





    I hate that they changed it at all. I would have preferred an identical slider design with text matching the rest of the UI. Changing it makes me think they're either okay with the illegal invalidation of their patent or that they've even agreed with it.


     


    What the heck is "illegal invalidation"?


     


    However, I think you have a germ of an idea there.  Apple will often keep doing even silly things, if they think it's necessary to support their legal claims.


     


    For example, Apple still ships iPads with a default of only four icons in the dock, even if it's dumb to not have at least six. They do this to try to back up their trade dress assertion that showing four dock icons is an "ornamental" choice and not just functionally related to screen size. (e.g. in phones).


     


    So, as you say, keeping the old slider would also be handy for (old) patent assertions.  With the patents being invalidated, there's no need to keep the old method around.


     


    Also, perhaps Ive and others are tired of bending over to the legal department, and want to diminish its influence on the UI.  (Thus the departure of the head of their Patent Licensing and Strategy group.)


     


    It'll be interesting to see if Ive takes more advantage of the iPad's much greater screen space.

  • Reply 15 of 23
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    kdarling wrote: »
    It'll be interesting to see if Ive takes more advantage of the iPad's much greater screen space.

    If the beta on YouTube is any indication, you can expect 4 icons in the dick again. Besides, there's a simplify to that visual that makes the default iPad setup less intimidating.
  • Reply 16 of 23
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,625moderator
    ireland wrote: »
    I've heard of people taking their iOS 7 drvices from their pockets to check the time only to find their phone unlocked. So less prone to error is not necessarily accurate.

    I find that hard to believe unless their dick is doing more than holding 4 icons and actually unlocking it:
    ireland wrote:
    you can expect 4 icons in the dick again

    To unlock the phone, the home or power button still needs to be pressed and the whole screen has to be dragged over. It also locks itself after a short time.
    ireland wrote: »
    And when there are notifications in iOS 7 you can no longer unlock across the entire screen which is inconsistent and will no doubt be confusing to some users.

    I agree that's inconsistent and I'd prefer some other visual indicator on the screen.
    kdarling wrote:
    For example, Apple still ships iPads with a default of only four icons in the dock, even if it's dumb to not have at least six.

    Apple has good designers - they like to align things. Also, if they did use 6, guess who else would use 6 by default and you'd say the same thing, 'why doesn't Apple use 5 icons so that it doesn't look like everyone else is copying them?'. Why doesn't everyone else just use 6 if it's dumb not to?
  • Reply 17 of 23
    jrcjrc Posts: 817member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post





    That makes little sense. Especially with all the new collaboration inside Apple and iCloud.


    You're right. It's past the point of no return. 

  • Reply 18 of 23
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    jrc wrote: »
    You're right. It's past the point of no return. 

    Why would anyone want it to return?
  • Reply 19 of 23
    kdarlingkdarling Posts: 1,640member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post





    If the beta on YouTube is any indication, you can expect 4 icons in the dick again. Besides, there's a simplify to that visual that makes the default iPad setup less intimidating.


     


    And less intuitive.  The default setup should be an example of what can be done.


     


    I run across iOS users all the time, who had no idea that they could put more than four icons in their dock.


     


    I do hope that Ive decides to do something different with the iPad homescreen.  There's so much room on a tablet screen, it just cries out to be used for default displays of information, especially when docked.  (Beyond just the iOS built-in picture frame mode.)


     


    Long ago,  I bought a wonderful iPad app that was a dashboard display with weather, news, photos, etc.  That's what a dock mode should have.

  • Reply 20 of 23
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,625moderator
    kdarling wrote: »
    And less intuitive.  The default setup should be an example of what can be done.

    So you're saying Android's 7 home screens should come cluttered with unevenly shaped widgets by default?
    kdarling wrote: »
    I run across iOS users all the time, who had no idea that they could put more than four icons in their dock.

    I didn't know you could put more than 4 in there either because you can't on the iPhone but I've never tried to put more than 4 in there and even now that I know I can put more in, I don't need more than 4 in there.
    kdarling wrote: »
    I do hope that Ive decides to do something different with the iPad homescreen.  There's so much room on a tablet screen, it just cries out to be used for default displays of information, especially when docked.

    Long ago,  I bought a wonderful iPad app that was a dashboard display with weather, news, photos, etc.  That's what a dock mode should have.

    You can use Android for that. It doesn't matter much if they get screen burn because they're cheaper:

    http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/archive/1897429
    http://www.xoomforums.com/forum/motorola-xoom-general-discussion/16655-any-fear-leaving-screen-while-dock.html
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