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March 23, 2021

UX trends in 2021

Blogs author avatar

Posted by:
Varshini M

This year is gonna be a very challenging year in terms of UX! Any guesses?

Yes! The usage of digital platforms has increased tremendously. We can see some of the big decisions have taken place and also succeeded so far!

Let's break this discussion into two parts. One will be the recap of UX in 2020 and the other one is what we can expect in 2021.

A Recap: the State of UX in 2020

The main challenge in the market is sensing the customer's needs and wants. The companies who want to win the higher market share must be a step ahead to anticipate the future UX trends. So, big decisions have been made.

Personalizing experiences

Personalization is a part of Experience optimization. In this market, we have several user segments. The same experience for different users will not work anymore. Each user can have unique ideas. Many technologies that evolved to provide personalized and seem fewer experiences to the users. Where it started means the browser storing the user's basic information. Storing Cookies are a great example of this.

I have evergreen examples for this personalization concept.


A well-known video streaming service that applied Machine learning technology to provide relevant content by Personalising recommendations, Push notifications and Search results.


Starbucks, a famous coffee brand that allows you to order coffee with their remarkable app with excellent user experience. It combines geo-location & Artificial Intelligence to provide a futuristic experience. If you are nearby their outlet location, You can get highly personalized promo messages.


Voice UI

Voice User Interfaces (VUIs) and virtual assistants help users navigate through an app faster while the hands-free capabilities allow users to multitask. VUI will continue to strengthen its position as the second most popular type of app navigation after graphical user interface (GUI).

Voice-assisted UI will definitely continue getting closer to the first position in the ranking. There is even a quite promising prediction made by ComScore in 2016 that nearly half of searches will be voice searches in 2020.

Some of the game changers are Alexa and Siri.

Here, some of the data, showing how life has changed!


Rise of VR & AR

The boundaries between the physical and digital worlds will continue to be blurred by virtual reality (VR) and artificial reality or augmented reality (AR) technologies. The success achieved with their VR/AR-powered apps by such pioneers as Ikea, Toyota, LEGO, and Zara has motivated many other companies to take a fresh look at the way they market and sell goods.

In terms of costs and availability of experts, the creation of applications containing virtual reality or augmented reality elements has also become more available. All these variables lay the foundations for a VR/AR boom that can now happen every year. Not all market sectors would, of course, embrace these innovations equally easily. But soon, such industries as interior design, e-commerce, and fashion are likely to become dependent on this form of interaction design.

For example, Gucci launched its AR-based app at the beginning of this year that enables users to try on sneakers by pointing a smartphone camera at their feet.


Adaptability to the new foldable phones

2019 has become a big accomplishment for mobile manufacturers in the industry. Finally, the long-awaited folding displays became a reality. Practically all industry leaders have either expressed their interest in creating such a product or have disclosed their prototypes that can be folded in various ways.

Samsung sought to outpace its rivals, recognizing that the stakes were high. The company pre-released its Galaxy Fold in April, the first foldable smartphone in the world.

Although the technology has been exposed to a range of quality issues and Samsung has had to postpone its introduction, we have every reason to expect foldable displays to join the global mass market in 2020. Naturally, this will bring a lot of improvements to user interfaces, such as:

A grip will depend on whether an individual holds a gadget that is folded and unfolded. UX designers' primary role is to make it comfortable for both situations.

A consumer would have to be able to seamlessly switch between various types of a computer. That's why app developers need to ensure an application's longevity, which means that when upgrading to a new device, a person should have an opportunity to continue using it.

Unfolded devices would allow users on their screens to have several active applications. So, designers would need to keep this multitasking skill in mind to create a truly outstanding user experience.


Image source:

The obsession with the dark themes

In September 2019, Dark Mode became the most visible visual update introduced by iOS13. The role offers the option of replacing black and dark grey with the bright colors of the GUI, making it more comfortable for the eyes in a poorly lit environment.

Dark modes were also introduced by Instagram, Gmail, and Facebook during the month following this update (partially). So we can make positive projections about the 'fever' dark mode, which is likely to extend in 2020.


Image source:

Final thoughts

Reviewing these developments based on our professional experience and technical development.

Yet the modern world is hyper-dynamic and, in the blink of an eye, a lot can change. Some creative solutions can appear unexpectedly and act as an industry-wide game-changer.

But, we need to keep track of the 2020 UX best practices.

What should we expect from UX 2021?

UX design is a competitive area that brings us new trends every year, and no exception is the last twelve months. The global COVID-19 pandemic and national lockdowns have brought a sudden change, both digital and physical, to the way we communicate with the world. Not only have people begun to spend more time online; they have begun to think and act differently. The coronavirus situation, of course, has impacted the current state of UX and provided the basis for the 2021 UX patterns.

The key trends in 2021 user experience that we expect will govern and are likely to influence the year to come are outlined in this article. Take a look to see what trends you can use to outpace your rivals and stand out from the crowd.

Rise of digital platforms due to COVID-19 Situation

The coronavirus silenced them if there were any remaining questions about the need for digital conversion to company longevity. The vast majority of communications with consumers and employees must take place electronically in a contactless environment. With rare exceptions, the only way to remain in business through mandatory shutdowns and minimal operation is to operate digitally. It's about going digital or going underground.


Voice UI

Voice UI will also remain in UX's hottest trends this year.

Voice chatbots and voice assistance will begin to rise in popularity in 2021.

When it comes to digital experiences, consumers will continue searching for simplicity and efficacy.

Apart from consumer demand, high expectations, and the rapid growth of AI technologies, there is no alternative but to include voice-based features in their products.

Starbucks has started already..!

Starbucks has introduced an AI-based chatbot called My Starbucks Barista.

Its goal is to improve the coffee-ordering experience by allowing users to buy their favorite beverages via voice commands.


Minimalistic UI

These days, one of the most noticeable developments in graphic design. Users experience a steadily rising number of important messages that website owners want to send.

Cookie popups, coupon promotions, and numerous updates are aimed at engaging and converting visitors to the website, but they also draw our attention. This is where user-centric minimalism comes to the fore.

"It implies "sleek" and "effective.

UX designers can also play with proportions and designs, but a limited number of colors, design elements, and bright combinations are a must. Besides, the functionality of elements comes to the forefront, and it takes a lot of imagination to better highlight product features and sends the correct message.

In comparison, elements with only aesthetic uses are increasingly losing their significance.


Another essential feature of the minimalistic approach to UX design is the consistency of text, messages, and navigation.

For most modern audiences, data overload is a pain, which means that website owners should aim to make their UX writing simple and succinct.

Negative Space

Project pattern for Big UX!

Either outside the objects (macro space) or inside them, the empty areas on page layouts (micro space).

In visual aesthetics and user experience optimization, it has already become a separate design feature that plays a vital role.

Great examples include Google's homepage, Apple's official shop, and some Webflow websites.


Imperfect Elements


Online experiences after the COVID-19 pandemic will not be the same as those we got used to.

UX design reflects the imperfection in a relatable way.

To make the brand's digital presence more relatable, designers intentionally implement some "imperfections" in layouts. It may be anything, from hand-drawn objects to extraordinary elements in compositions or proportions.

In general, imperfect design can be an excellent way to demonstrate the brand's identity and highlight its uniqueness.

There needs to be a balance. It won't work if you overdo things.


The synthesis of two other massive UI design methods, skeuomorphism, and flat design, which are mostly viewed as opposite to each other.

Skeuomorphism is all about mimicking objects from the real world and how we deal with them. To build an intuitive and user-friendly UI, these kinds of hyper-real elements were required. Each of these examples is a trash can.

Flat design is a simplified, more recent trend that focuses on two-dimensional elements, minimalism, and bright colors. Neumorphism takes the best of the two worlds with it. Graphic-intense elements, shadows, and gradients are used to make buttons and cards appear like objects in nature while not recreating them precisely. The neuromorphic form does not drive realism to an excessive degree. Instead, with pale colors and slight contrast, it aims to achieve a "soft" look.


Final Thoughts

The user experience of practically any software solution or website will certainly enhance all UX trends listed here. Even when consumer expectations are high, they can also make the product more visually appealing to its target audience.

Nevertheless, the past year has taught us that it is hard to expect. To optimize the website, you must rely on UX Design Service in Bangalore.

Appiness is a well known UI/UX agency in India, offering minimalist UI/UX Design Service in Bangalore that matches the trends of today and the technology of tomorrow.

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