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April 3, 2008

The proof is in the playtime

PALO ALTO, USA – The metamorphosis of a phone from conception to in your pocket can be freakishly fast. So one of the most crucial times in a handset’s evolution is early on in the prototype phase, where there’s the most opportunity to hone designs.

More playtime and user interface testing, simply means better devices. With this front of mind, the Nokia Research Centre is digging into ways to speed up this initial phase.

Tico Ballagas, User Experience Researcher at NRC, explains the vision:

“Human-centered iterative design is necessary to find interfaces that useful, and pleasurable. It is currently very expensive to develop functional prototypes that can be tested with users. By the time they can be tested, it is often too late or too expensive to make fundamental design changes. We need new tools to lower the threshold and accelerate the construction of low-fidelity functional prototypes to identify fundamental design problems earlier in the design process, before significant costs are invested.”

Do you reckon this research can improve the quality of the end product?