UI and UX are one of many terms that are used interchangeably, even though both have different meanings. If you are confused about the terms even after googling it, then don't worry, you are not alone. You have come to the right place, where today we will discuss both UI and UX and understand how different they are and how related they are to each other. If you are a beginner in this field and are looking for a great training resource to start a career, check out this fantastic UI and UX Design Course.
We will be discussing these topics in this blog to help you get a comprehensive understanding.
UI stands for "User Interface". UI Design is one of the booming sectors today in the tech industry. In terms of application, UI Design stands for User Interface Design or the application's graphical layout. It contains everything from the button that users click on, the messages, images they see, the sliders, text entry fields, and other items they interact with. Everything you see on a digital screen which includes screen layout, interface animations, transitions, and other micro-interactions comes under UI Design.
The people behind designing these graphical interfaces are UI Designers. They decide which color scheme is right, which layout is apt, the width of a line, the font of the text, look and feel of the user interface. These UI Designers are also graphic designers, who are concerned with the aesthetics of the application. They will make sure that all the graphics or aesthetics of the application match the theme of the app, serving the purpose intended.
UX stands for "User Experience". User Experience Design or UX Design is defined as the way a consumer or user of a platform interacts with the platform. These platforms could be an app, website, or any other medium. The people working behind UX Design are called UX Designers.
These professionals gauge human interactions with various platforms like an app, a website, etc. They measure how smooth an experience is compared to other apps or websites. Is the experience smooth, is it intuitive, or hard or confusing for the user? Is it feeling clunky or disorganized? Does navigating around feel logical or is it random without making any sense?
At this point, you might be wondering, if these many questions are asked, then which is the best way to determine one application's UX is better than the other if both serve altogether different users. The answer is that there is no one size fits all answer to this question. The UX of an app is deemed good or bad based on how easy or difficult it is to navigate around the app.
Allow me to explain UX and UI in points, and later will discuss them in detail with examples to help you understand the subtle difference between the two.
Example No. 1: Consider a scenario of horse riding. The UI elements are saddle, stirrups, and the reins used for horse riding. UX is the feeling that one gets while riding a horse.
Example No. 2: Consider an example of the human body. UI Design constitutes bones and bone structure. The organs present inside the human body represent UX Design. Now without these organs, life won't be supported. Without the bones and bone structure, there is no definite shape to the human body.
Some famous thinkers have put forward correct thinking on these topics, like UI without UX is like a painter painting without a thought, and UX without UI is like a sculptured frame without material in it.
You might have understood the difference by now, the essential takeaway from these examples is the fact that despite having distinct features, one cannot live without the other.
The one-liner difference between the two terms that you must keep in mind is that: UI is all about how a product's interface looks and functions, whereas UX is all about the overall feel of the experience. After intensive research and competitor analysis, UX Designer maps out the user journey, and then UI Designer steps in to fill in visual aspects. It's essential to have some knowledge in both fields to be able to gain proficiency in one field.
UX Designer takes into consideration the user's entire journey in solving a particular problem. What steps will they take? What tasks do they need to complete? And how direct is their experience? Most of their work revolves around finding solutions to users' problems while navigating around an interface.
While UI Designer's work revolves around the visual aspects of the user's experience. It includes everything from screen layouts to touch experience, etc. Most of their work is graphical.
If you are one of those people who are interested in learning where a user gets stuck, or how to make a process more direct or easier for the user to harness more attention, then you are better suited for UX Designer positions. On the other hand, if you find creating graphics or other visual elements more pleasing, then the UI Designer position is more suitable for you.
Now I hope you are clear with the terms UI and UX and how different and related they are from/to each other. This sector is currently booming with a lot of career opportunities that you can take a look at. The best thing about these fields is that you don't require any coding/programming skills to be able to start in this domain.
S Krishna Raj is a Content Writer who fabricates content on the latest trends in the IT space. He has a keen interest in Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Cloud Technologies. His other interests are Motorsports and Sustainable Technologies.
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