We come across several people who are lacking general awareness regarding the two terms. It becomes essential for us to as UI designers to educate everyone on UI and UX’s fundamental difference. UX refers to the user experience designer, whereas UI is the user interface designer. Both these are crucial for a product and work closely with each other.
Hence it is essential to understand the difference to identify the right candidate for the job. Usually, the job description that we send out is more inclined towards a UI designer, but a UX designer is responsible. This only gives rise to confusion.
What can be done?
When we talk of UI or UX designer, there is still an element of design. Design is the solution to the problem. It is easier to attack a problem when the roles are clearly defined and discussed in detail.
In the case of a UI and UX designer, the problem arises when one person is assigned the responsibility for both the interface and the experience. The person does not have expertise in both fields.
It is not easy to own up to the problem, and it is not easy to tell an interface designer to take control of the experience part. However, it does not mean that a UX designer is comfortable with graphic design; it is equally challenging.
The first step is to understand the difference between UI and UX. This would bring clarity to what should be done. Proper knowledge of both the terms is a simple way to communicate, which will help in better design and better user experience.
Once upon a time, if you heard the word design, you would be thinking about graphic design lines. But nowadays, the digital world has become very vast and complicated leading to several new job positions that have opened up, which confuses the people outside the design industry.
Today the terms User Interface(UI) and User Experience (UX) are the two essential components of creativity and technology.
The problem with these two words is there inadvertent combination or interchange of the terms. This happens due to the incorrect expectation that a user interface designer knows all about user experience. The fact is that the User Interface is not User Experience. The hope or confusion is due to the overlapping skill set. They are related, and many times a UI designer is competent in both.
To make it simple, let’s take it up one by one.
The two might be overlapping but are different in nature, the overall objective and scope of work.
A designer is concerned with how the product feels. The designer makes sure that the app flows smoothly from one step to the other. It is concerned with the pleasure that the customer gets when interacting with a product.
The UX designer will define a path so that it will make the most sense to the person who will use that specific feature.
A UX designer’s path is – research, user testing, sketching, and prototyping. The UX designer will make sure that the user can do that specific thing seamlessly and intuitively.
Once the user experience has been built, the UX designer might have spent countless hours researching, understanding the goals, prototyping, and integrating it with the other pages. They know the best ways to give you a seamless experience going from one page to another. Every button or drop-down has been carefully thought through by the UX designer to provide you with the best experience.
In simple terms, the user interface is the app’s look and feel; it is the physical elements that we see. It is the screens, pages, and all visual elements like icons, buttons, logos that you interact with.
A user experience designer defines how you will feel while using the app, but a UI designer decides how the button or logo looks. All physical elements, including the color, buttons, graphs, logos, animation, graphics, and any form of art that makes the app look beautiful, will be done by an interface designer.
UI designers give a whole new level to the prototype and sketches. It is not only about the look of the app; it is about creating a state of mind to feel confident when using a product.
The difference between the two.
A simple example will clear your confusion between UI and UX- A UX designer will decide that on clicking on the button, you will go to the next page. In contrast, a UI designer will visually signal with the help of animations that you are going to the next page.
A UI/ UX designer has different approaches to the same thing. A UX designer will focus on what the user does once he/she opens the app, and a UI designer focuses on how the user will feel about the app while interacting with it. The UX designer will logically think about how the user will move from one screen to another and define the path, whereas the UI designer will focus on the app’s look and feel.