The Global Bible Read was created by Daily Audio Bible as an ambitious project to create the first crowd-sourced video reading of the Bible. Their goal is to have the entire bible read by people around the World, and would be viewable as a continuous reading through each verse.
Daily Audio Bible came to us to design the user interface and graphics for the mobile app of the Global Bible Read (GBR). The app’s role is to be the primary way people interact with the GBR, using the phone’s onboard camera to create verse recordings and viewing others.
In general, the design process for a mobile app is similar to designing a website. Both go through strategy, wireframe, and design phases, and they both share a lot of the same standards for usability and interaction. Page structure and conversion processes can also function very similarly.
The unique aspects of app design
However, mobile apps differ in a couple key ways when it comes to practical execution. Firstly, it is much more important for a mobile app to follow the GUI (graphic user interface) standards of the native operating system. In other words, an app on an iPhone needs to feel like it’s part of iOS and an app on an Android phone needs to feel like it belongs on Android. This is key for users to be able to intuitively understand how to use an app without a learning curve.
Secondly, context for an app design is often very different from a website. Research has shown that mobile users tend to use apps for shorter periods of time than websites. Users prefer to use apps for quick tasks, and don’t like bulky, content-heavy apps.
For example, while a hair salon website may have detailed information on their services, their staff, business history, media galleries, multiple avenues of connection and more, the app really just needs to have a booking system and a service list.
Ultimately, an app needs to have a strategic role that fits with your other connection points with users. An app ideally should augment a website, not replicate it.
Wireframing the user interface
Once the strategy had been set for the Global Bible Read app, we began creating the wireframes for the app. The wireframing stage has two primary goals: to establish the flow of a user through the app, and to create the foundation of the user interface.
When we began wireframing the user flow, we decided to focus on the three primary tasks the app needs to provide: record a verse, watch verses, or participate in a group event. The user interface was kept simple and straightforward, leaning on OS conventions to be more intuitive for users.
The bulk of the app are forms that are part of the process of recording verses and viewing them, so we paid particular attention to making sure the forms were easy to understand, quick to navigate, and approachable to users inexperienced with technology.
The design phase
With the wireframes complete, we began creating fleshed-out mockups in the design phase. Most of the app’s content comes down to forms so there weren’t many design elements aside from colors and photos, which we used sparingly to keep the interface clean and focused.
We are very happy with how the design for the Global Bible Read app turned out. We believe it will help GBR to fulfill their mission by providing users with an intuitive and streamlined user interface. We look forward to seeing it in action!
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