As you can imagine, we’re pretty picky when it comes to apps we consider the crème-de-la-crème and rightfully so. This is our little world and we have standards just as you do in your field for what constitutes a good app.
So let us share what those criteria are.
1. Clean, Simple Design
There’s nothing worse than a clunky feeling app. We’ve all gotten so use to Apple’s iOS 7 designs of clean & simple and for good reason. Apps are supposed to make our lives easier, so when we interact with them in hectic situations, it should reflect the serenity they are meant to provide.
2. Everything In Its Right Place
There is a standard for where back, cancel, submit and next buttons go, you just can’t mess with that. As soon as you the user has to think twice, you’ve lost them. You don’t need to move the foundation to be unique, there are many other places your brand creativity can come through.
Next to #1 above, the second cardinal sin for us is cornucopia of colours. Simple colour palettes 2-4 colours is all one really needs.
Try COLOURlovers and choose the base colour you feel works best, allow yourself to explore new palettes and try to avoid overly dark tones. In the end you want contrast to make your app feel as good as it looks.
This rule is universal. NEVER have more than 3 fonts in a design, the ONLY exception to this rule are hipster designs which use multiple fonts to evoke early 19th century design:
The reason for this is much the same as colour, you don’t want to stress the eyes and you want simple contrast to elevate your design, not challenge it.
5. Be Unique
Some people like to break the above rules and you’re more than welcome, however for us the aspect one should be concentrating on, the raison d’être, is how you re-invent the wheel.
Look at the weather app Partly Cloudy which uses a clock visualization to show you a weather forecast. We use this app solely based on the perspective it gives us, it’s just.. wild but still functional.
This is where your idea comes to life, in how you visualize it!