How We Used User Experience Principles To Improve Our Mobile App by@iscanner

How We Used User Experience Principles To Improve Our Mobile App

Kseniia Cherniaieva HackerNoon profile picture

Kseniia Cherniaieva

BP Mobile create mobile products for iOS and Android. We focus on business projects.

Constant improvement is an integral part of app development. Continuous neural network training is key to upgrading apps and raising the bar in the sphere. The recipe for improving any app is quite simple—listen to user feedback, choose relevant reviews, and use them to form hypotheses for how to enhance the app.

Feedback-based app analysis and improvement is a crucial task for the whole team. This process allows us to single out both the advantages and the drawbacks of the app. The former become the basis for development, while the latter are either fixed or improved.

As an example, let's look at how the user experience has influenced the improvement of the iScanner mobile app. Spoiler #1: there were several such cases. Spoiler #2: An improved app release is not always good for the user.

Listen to the users who have been with you from the beginning

Even though we prioritize the app’s quality, it’s tough to pay attention to all the feedback. From time to time, users of iScanner let support know about the problems they run into while using iScanner. For example, recently was a message from a user who has been with the app since 2016! He has mentioned that he stores about 6000 scans in the app, all of them between 25 and 45 MB in size. That’s why it’s very important for him that all the buttons remain in the same spots. Feedback from such heavy users is especially valuable, as they’re the ones who interact with the app more often and actively than others. It’s they who notice rare bugs and notify developers about them.

Why turning off ads is a good solution

It’s quite common for apps to display third-party ads. As a rule, they are shown in the form of full-screen videos that prevent the user from working with the app until the end of the clip. This was the case with iScanner, too. However, a team was touched by the story of a student who needed to submit a task right before the deadline. This is a nerve-racking situation, as disrupting work for several seconds at a crucial moment may cause a lot of stress to users. That’s why developers decided to meet their needs and remove third-party ads from the app. 

A new feature is not always good for users

One of the cases that was encountered at iScanner is a color autodetection while scanning. After this feature was introduced to the app, the team started getting negative feedback from their users. They complained about not being able to control the scanning process and scan in one color. The autodetection of the source document’s color and the application of a corresponding filter were supposed to speed up and simplify the scanning process. In reality, however, some users found these features difficult to work with, as they lost control over the documents’ color settings. At first, it seemed like the app had improved the process, but user feedback convinced developers to discard the feature. This case shows that updates don’t always equal improvements.

It should be noted that continuous development of an app will always cause minor bugs. Developers need to understand this, handle criticism well, and keep working on improving the product.

It’s also important to remember that any changes may cause the users to split into two camps—those who enjoy them and those who don’t. Even though feedback is crucial and provides unique information, following it blindly is not the best idea. Keep in mind that reviews are a starting point that allows the team to look into the situation and make a decision based on the bigger picture.


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