Mobile Design Trends For 2016

In this fast paced world, design trends have been emerging rapidly with new operating systems and devices. Some of the trends have managed to stick around for years together, while some are being shaped under an influence of technology and artistic forces. Mobile application design trends are not just trends, they are beyond imagination nowadays. For major brands, mobile application design plays a vital role; their objective is simple – “be unique with qualitative performance” when it comes to designing compelling mobile apps.

Today’s growing market of smart devices revolves around intuitive mobile apps which can take you ahead of your competition and that is why mobile UX & UI are so critical in delivering unique results to the users. Apart from this, there are various factors that drive growth of mobile application design. If your assumptions are killing your mobile apps designs then read this blog to get some ideas for your next mobile app design project.

Mobile Application Design Trends

1. Bigger Screen Designs

Bigger screen designs may look clunky or odd, but the new generation has easily adopted oversized smartphones and tablets and they are to continue with “Bigger” screens. Surveys stated that, smart devices with big screens are expected to grow 35% a year until 2018.

So, the obvious reason is to go to with “Bigger Designs”. However, it is the challenge to those who create comfortable interface for small devices. And now designers are inclined towards creating designs for big screens since it is one of the hottest trends of mobile designing.

Latest mobile application design trends

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2. Smooth User Interface

When it comes designing mobile apps, the first thing to consider is to create smooth User Interface (UI). UI designers focus more on its practical elements like clarity, flexibility and functional which play up the benefits of digital screens. By offering smooth UI, designers allow users to have an entire app experience in a unique way.

Smooth User Interface

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3. Swiping, Natural Gestures

Swipe is the most natural gesture nowadays. Surprisingly in 2016, majority of apps will highlight its ease of use in their designs. Card layouts and swiping go hand in hand with this year’s design trends. Card based feeds in different platform will combine the overall design.

Swiping, Natural Gestures

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4. Functional Animation

Functional animation is the most captivating trend which makes app experience more active with more direct visualization. It brings new level of excitement and richness for its users. Nowadays designers are incorporating animation as a functional factor which boosts the UX. Functional animation is a superb trend for eCommerce stores. It is the perfect way to make animations moving! Functional animation usually helps distinguish apps from their competitors; it also helps in navigation.

Functional Animation

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5. Overlays

Overlays are increasingly being used by designers these days. Overlays move the users out of the app’s normal flow within a few seconds. To incorporate overlays in mobile application design, below tips should be followed by the designers.

  • Overlays should not be the hurdle to users in the apps’ functionality and story.
  • There should be detailed information on a specific content.
  • Overlays should be confirmed with proper decisions and actions.

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6. Unique Navigation

Another of those upcoming design trends is to make navigation as unique as possible without sacrificing the intuitiveness. Users now have innovative options such as, vertical, horizontal, modular, hidden navigation and parallax scrolling. All these elements are immensely popular when it comes to designing mobile apps. Unique navigation provides a better user experience too.

Unique Navigation

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7. Branding With Storytelling

Brands are putting more emphasis on incorporating storytelling in their apps. They use mobile apps to link up their offline and online presence. Majority of business use mobile branding with storytelling to achieve their desired results. Designs that tell stories will continue to play a vital role in the overall app experience.

Branding With Storytelling

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8. Meaningful Typography

In 2016, typography has become more meaningful with words presentation. Fonts are getting attention of designers more than ever before, since fonts signify an evident hierarchy between typeface and content types, regardless of screen size. There is a visual hierarchy; both bold and big fonts are strong enough to make them impressive.

Meaningful Typography

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9. Flat Design 2.0 Begins to Replace Flat Design

Flat design 2.0 is like material design because in both, 3D effects (gradients, shadows and lighting) are used. However, material design is more appealing than Flat design 2.0. Currently, users are looking for more mobile apps and sites to have subtle 3D elements.

Flat Design 2.0 Begins to Replace Flat Design

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10. Fresh Color Palettes

With flat designs, fresh color schemes play a pivotal role. In 2016, mobile design trends are much more about simple colors and soft contrasts with light and dark backgrounds. Sometimes, mobile application design move ahead with vibrant colors too.

Fresh Color Palettes

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How will be the mobile design trends in future? Answer is, “Innovative”! You will discover innovation in every design trend you come across.

  • Around 25% branded apps are installed on smart devices every month.
  • 75% users like to surf products and solutions using mobile applications.
  • Every year, 30% of app designs get updated with “must-have” trends.

So, are you ready to make a move with above mobile application design trends? Try out these design styles, if you already haven’t, and give your app the modern edge.

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Article Author Details


Mr. Maulik Shah is the founder & CEO of Biztech IT Consultancy Pvt Ltd., one of the most reputed and leading web design and Development Company in India. He also runs Biztech Blog, where he shares about the happenings in Biztech and latest updates/news in the website development world.