“As VUI naturally begins to integrate more fully into new devices that also have visual components—like the new Amazon Echo Spot and Amazon Show—designers have the opportunity to create a new level of rich experience,” explained Susse. “We’ve created this VUI prototyping kit to give you the building blocks to create your own.”
Best practices for using the Amazon Alexa Voice UI Kit
For designers to get the most out of XD’s new voice-prototyping feature, they have to know how to get the most out of this UI kit. This VUI kit empowers designers by giving them the best starting point when venturing into voice-enabled design in XD, because the kit includes APL.
According to Susse, this kit addresses Amazon’s most popular voice-enabled device and market-share leader, the Amazon Echo.
“We have put together an Amazon Alexa UI kit that includes components and templates for four of the Amazon Echo screens: Echo Spot, Echo Show 1st gen, Echo Show 2nd gen, and Fire TV,” she said.
The kit features:
- APL Colors and Fonts
- APL Components
- APL Templates
What designers are doing with APL is building interactive voice experiences that include graphics, slideshows, images, and videos that can be customized for different devices. Based on user statistics, customers are gravitating more toward voice because it’s easy and natural, and APL’s resources and tools make it simple for designers to transmit voice-first experiences to screens.
“The UI kit is made of building blocks and templates that reflect Amazon’s new visual language, APL. Any designer who is designing skills for an Echo Spot, Echo Show, or a Fire TV can use this kit as a starting point,” Susse noted. “And because these are all devices that combine a screen and voice design, designers can design for both in XD. The kit also has a small sample project that’s hooked up, for anyone just getting started with voice design.”
The Amazon Alexa UI Kit allows you to build Skills that are:
- Rich – Voice-first, interactive experiences including text, video, slideshows, and graphics. Synch on-screen text with spoken voice, and support voice and touch/remote controls.
- Flexible – Control over on-screen UX by defining placement of visual elements on the screen. Reuse designs to ensure a consistent brand and visual experience across a range of Skills.
- Adaptable – Personalize experiences to reach customers anywhere, thanks to various Alexa screens. Tailor the UX to the unique qualities of each Alexa device.
- Ease of Use – Get started immediately with this kit and APL by using Amazon’s supplied sample APL documents, which can be customized by designers and work smoothly across a range of different devices.
How VUI can impact design in the future
Despite voice’s continued growth, the majority of users are still most comfortable using touch and visual interactions on their devices. Because of these user behaviors, many designers don’t yet recognize how the combination of voice and visual elements can take their UX to another level. This is changing, and we’re hoping the introduction of voice prototyping in Adobe XD will help move the dial.
As it stands, there is a lot of potential for designers to harness the power of voice and do great things with it.
“I can’t wait to see some of the amazingly skilled designers out there getting their hands on this voice and screen design combined,” she said.
The applications for voice are many, and voice UIs have the power to solve many common, everyday problems or limitations impacting their current devices.
“You can provide customers with complementary information that’s easily glanceable from across the room, or you can use the screen to enrich your voice-first experience and reduce friction for customers. For example, you can offer visual cues for confirmation or show lists of items during a content search experience,” said Susse.
If you’ve ever wanted to dive straight into designing for voice, there’s no better path than this kit. Thanks to its compatibility with XD and array of APL templates and fonts, you can get started immediately.
More than a kit, however, it represents the brave, new world that design is very quickly moving toward, where voice will be used to create UIs that are more user-friendly and popular than ever.
“I have spoken to a lot of organizations getting started with designing voice interfaces, and I hope that their design teams will build something much better than we could think of,” said Susse. “The best is yet to come.”
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