Mobile Antipatterns

An Antipattern:

In software engineering, an anti-pattern (or antipattern) is a pattern used in social or business operations or software engineering that may be commonly used but is ineffective and/or counterproductive in practice :: Wikipedia

Mobile, being a new area, is generating its own set of anti-patterns. Some of the better (worse?) ones:

Avoiding these when you are designing your app is fairly easy - a lot of them are just lazy design (or lazy coding). Sometimes, breaking them is a requirement:

The Bouncer: The bouncer anti-pattern occurs when the Cocoa Touch application requires authentication credentials for operation, but doesn’t offer the option for creating those credentials inside the application. Instead, the application opens Safari and forces registration through a web page, or worse, offers no option for registration at all. - Programming the iPhone User Experience, Antipatterns chapter

However, if you did include a sign up link, for a free+paid service (eg Dropbox), Apple would reject the app. Sometimes you just have to know which rules to break.

If you are interested in UX and design - and as a mobile developer, I think having some basic knowledge and interest is now a requirement - there are lots of good resources around:

  • UX Apprentice - online course explaining the processes around UX
  • Sidebar - a daily email of 5 design and UX links
  • Hack Design - more web than mobile, but has good content on responsive design and typography
Nic Wise

Nic Wise

Auckland, NZ