Designing for multiple platforms is, as always, a challenge due to so many differente parameters.

Designing for multiple platforms is, as always, a challenge due to so many differente parameters.

Sam Woodman is a lead UX consultant at Adobe, and thanks to UXParis Linkedin Group and Nealite, he has made a remarkable speech before a packed audience at La Cantine (Paris) about the changes in UX paradigm in Tablet devices.
Updated: Julien Hillon has published his resumé in french:

These are what I have understood as the main points of his intervention:

  • A Tablet is a family thing, no more a personal device, but a family device
  • A tablet is very about gesture patterns
  • The sudden success and popularity of  tablets like iPad resides not just technology but user experience
  • A tablet interface should always to get rid of buttons and use gestures
  • The traditional Traditional pc interface paradigm: Start task -> abstraction (in the form of a keyboard or mouse -> finish task
  • The tablet represents less abstraction, more -> "natural user interface", by means of using gestures and simulation of movement through inertia, rebound and graphic effects
  • Reducing abstraction means a better interaction through a faster, easier, delightful and fulfilling experience

The tablets are cannibalizing other devices and appliances due their ease of use, portability and better user experience. (Graphic:

 What is going to change the paradigm in user interface?


  1. Everything is going mobile
  2. Mobile doesn't necessarily mean mobile. That meaning, a Tablet is not necessarily a mobile device. It is portable, but almost everybody uses it in a non moving environment (a living room, on the bed, even in WC!)
  3. Tablets will cannibalize other products like TV sets, desktop and laptop computers.
  4. A tablet is not necessarily for "pro" users right now (no photoshop, Logic or After effects) right now, but for the mass consumer group
  5. Lots of people realizes they can do lots of things faster and more easily on a tablet
  6. We will have to design for multiple devices
  7. It is ideal to have a consistent experience amongst desktop, telephone and tablet
  8. New modern desktop OSes have a direct upgrading influence from tactile/mobile devices (WIndows 8, Mac OSX Lion)
  9. Design for multiple platforms, with all the problems of different android OS, different browser versions..

Designing for multiple platforms is, as always, a challenge due to so many differente parameters.

Another insightful jewels from Sam:


  • There is a lot of room for gesture innovation. I.e., Bing is releasing a  system for starting a search just with rounding a word with a finger gesture
  • Taking advantage of sensors and all the hardware enhancements found in tablets lend to a great degree of innovation
  • Dan Saffer has wrote a very interesting o'reilly book on designing gestural interfaces
  • The medium is so young that now is the time of experimentation and not being afraid of making mistakes
  • You can not, as of today 2011, have a proper tablet experience with a wepapp
  • Digital magazines are a different lifeform into tablet ecosystem. With examples for Madam Figaro or Wired, the interface standards are being set now and there is room for a lot of improving
  • Inmersive or tacky design? it is a interesting debate now, defenders of graphic realism vs defenders of abstraction. Same debate since the rise of Mac OSX though..

We will tend to use different devices to accomplish daily tasks. So, consistent user experience through different devices is a must and a success key. (Graphic: Sheryl Yulin)