The World of UX and UI Design: Differences, Significance, and Everything in between

A famous web developer, Dain Miller, puts it succinctly:

“UI is the saddle, the stirrups, and the reins. UX is the feeling you get being able to ride the horse.”

In the digital age, terms like UX and UI design have become increasingly popular. Now that businesses are going digital or at least using some form of digital services — these terms are used on an everyday basis in the field of entrepreneurship.

What is UI and UX design, really?

Both, User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX), design are processes or ways of designing user interactions with machines, software, applications, and more. Let’s get into the details of both.

User Interface (UI) Design and its Significance

User Interface refers to the design that makes the interaction between users and machines seamless and efficient. Literally, it is our point of contact — us, the user, “facing” the machine/product. UI design involves designing that point of contact — the interface.

More specifically, designing a UI includes designing an intuitive interface with every visual and interactive element detailed out. For example, a UI designer would design the icons, buttons, the color palette, placement, typography, and how responsive the process is. Some part of it is designing the aesthetics — the look and feel of the product. The design process balances the technical functions behind the interface with its visual and interactive elements so that the product is not only functioning, but it is functioning in a way that is usable and intuitive to the user.

A successful UI design is one which guides the user’s movement through the interface intuitively, along with conveying the brand’s messaging with the aesthetic elements.

User Experience (UX) Design and its Significance

We are all familiar with “user experience” as a term — it is widely used in all kinds of fields that offer a product, service, or experience. For example, the user experience of a furniture or a coffee machine, or an app.

User Experience (UX) Design then refers to designing that user experience by taking into account all the different elements that create a certain experience. They consider how an experience makes users feel, how easy or difficult it is for a user to finish a task using the service or product. All of this is done by conducting user research, which involves observing and analyzing user’s interaction with the flow of the service or product. The goal is to create a fulfilling experience for the user in terms of quality of the experience.

While user experience as a concept is not exclusively digital and is used in all fields, in the context of the digital world, a UX designer focuses on improving the quality of user interaction with the product.

The difference between

UI and UX design are altogether two stages of the process of designing a product or service. The ultimate goal for both is the same — to design a seamless interaction and experience for the user. Because of this common ultimate goal, the two terms are often used interchangeably. However, the two serve different purposes in that ultimate goal – one being that of interaction (UI) and the other of experience (UX).

The design process is not truly complete and user-ready without both these types of design processes. So, what do they do differently?

UI design is all about the interaction of the user with the product and hence the aesthetics and intuitive functioning, whereas UX design is all about designing based on determining how the user will feel during this experience.

In the whole process, UX design is the first stage, where the designer lays out the user journey and determines the experience by identifying the user’s problems and the solutions to those. UI design is the second stage, where the journey and experience is made possible by building an interface which is aesthetically pleasing and intuitive — with visual and interactive elements.

TM Systems can help with every stage of the design process to help you develop a top-notch product and service. Check out our website for more information.