Posted by Domenico Aumenta

What is Material Design?

Developed by Google and released at Google’s 2014 I/O conference, material design has had a huge impact on the way applications and sites are designed and built.

The objective of material design is to provide the same user experience across different platforms (smartphones, tablets, desktops, etc.) through a set of carefully designed guidelines and frameworks.

The solution, which can be used by both designers and developers, has several aspects but we suggest paying attention to three particular areas:

  1. Responsive interaction
  2. Meaningful transitions
  3. Authentic motions

While it can be challenging to update existing application and sites, material design makes it easier for developers and designers to build a consistent user experience across the suite of their digital destinations.

The principles (as specified by Google)

Material is the metaphor: A material metaphor is the unifying theory of a rationalised space and a system of motion. Material is grounded in tactile reality, inspired by study of paper and ink, yet open to imagination and magic.

Bold, graphic, intentional: Bold design creates hierarchy, meaning and focus. Deliberate color choices, edge-to-edge imagery, large-scale typography and intentional white space create immersion and clarity.

Motion provides meaning: Motion is meaningful and appropriate, serving to focus attention and maintain continuity. Feedback is subtle yet clear. Transitions are efficient yet coherent.”

How will material design help you?

The use of material design is looking to improve user experience across your platforms. The transitions and motions that can be achieved through material design are user friendly on creating a simpler authentic experience for new and returning users on each device.

The catalogue of animations integrated with the Android bundle allows you to design a more responsive, seamless and elegant user experience, reducing fragmentation across different devices and platforms.

Applications will be more aesthetically pleasing and in line with modern mobile consumer expectations. The guidelines reinforce the principles that good content and easy-to-use interfaces are key ingredients for a quality user experience.

Still not making complete material sense? Check out Google’s responsive interaction examples to get a better feel!

Want to learn more about material design and how it can benefit your business? Feel free to drop us a line or find us on LinkedIn, we’d love to hear your thoughts!

Read more on Google’s Material Design here:

Google’s Introduction to Material Design (Google)

Making Material Design (Google Design)

Material Design for Android (Android Developer)

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