Used well, animations can have a really positive impact on the user’s experience of your mobile app. They can make navigation easy, provide information without the need for text or sounds and, of course, provide an element of visual interest in an otherwise static interface.
The best animations make your app easy and fun to use – but if they are not done properly, your app could inflict a horrible experience on users.
Integrating animations can be a bit of a minefield but help is at hand for those brave enough to try it in HTML5. So what are the key things to remember when creating animations in your mobile application?
- Varied screen sizes might play havoc with your animation: the sheer variety of devices and screen sizes out there, particularly for the Android platform, can cause developers headaches at the best of times. Nothing looks weirder than an animated element wandering off screen or obscuring important information.
- Different functions demand different types of animation: animations for navigation purposes (for example, revealing new content links) often need to be simpler than others. No user wants a navbar moving around the screen once it has been activated. However, if your animation is alerting the user that the app is in the middle of activity, you’ll need to keep it moving so users know that your app hasn’t frozen.
- Keeping it intuitive: your animation skills might be the hottest in town but is it obvious to your user what the animation is indicating? Many apps fall down on user experience purely because people have to poke and prod at multiple parts of the screen to figure them out. Test your animations thoroughly to make sure your users know what’s going on.
There are plenty of resources online to help you build useful and intuitive animations into your app, whether you want a starter guide on 2D animation or are focused on making the most of the animation possibilities HTML5 offers. Either way, let us know how you get on!
• This blog post is written by Softtalkblog, and is sponsored by the Intel Developer Zone, which helps you to develop, market and sell software and apps for prominent platforms and emerging technologies powered by Intel Architecture.
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