Justin Williams on designing apps for Windows Phone, Android and iOS:
These are three different platforms that offer three uniquely different visual experiences. That’s why it is so frustrating to see major media companies focus on building an experience that is unique to their brand, but doesn’t look or feel like it belongs on any specific platform.
I understand the desire to offer a unified experience across multiple platforms, but there are ways to do it while still respecting the unique features and attributes iOS, Android and Windows Phone offer. Facebook is one of the few larger companies to do a relatively decent job of this.
So true. I think the first and most important thing when designing apps for a particular platform is to respect the platform. You must know the platform ergonomics and UI conventions; a generic and theoric Design Knowledge doesn’t prevent you from knowing the platform and embrace its core experience. Textures on Game Center and Skeuomorphic Design don’t please you? This is your right, but these are the norm on iOS. You can play outside the rules but you have to know them.
Another important point when building and designing your app is to iterate. Effective prototyping is so simple now that you have to build your design with a live demo, test it with real users and iterate on feedbacks. See this video about Convert design evolution: