According to Samsung’s Designers, one of the primary design considerations for today’s products is to create user experiences that are accessible and open to all – equally – regardless of the user’s background or inabilities. It’s what is known in the field as accessibility design.
Our colleagues at the Samsung Design Website explored this topic recently by sharing how its designers are delivering technology experiences that assist your daily life, no matter what your situation may be. Especially for those with disabilities or who are advanced in age, accessibility design focuses on even the most smallest of needs with an eye-level, inside-out perspective to help everyone engage equally with Samsung’s products.
Here are a few examples from Samsung Design about how its design for all approach is delivering greater accessibility.
For the visually impaired
It’s important to build accessibility features into the design process. For Samsung Electronics, this combination of style and substance is the reason behind a focus on meaningful design. For example, who says that partially sighted people can’t take great photos? Samsung considered accessibility design from the inside out. The result is Voice Assistant, a feature that tells users how many people are in the camera frame and where they are. Picture perfect photography is now easier than ever.
This voice aided function also works well with air conditioners and TVs. Braille is set near the core functions such as power and temperature controls. The remote control buttons are vertically long for intuitive temperature and fan speed adjustments.
For the hearing impaired
Samsung thought long and hard about ways of making TV viewing inclusive for those with hearing impairments. The usual problem comes when turning up the volume on the main TV becomes too loud for those without an impairment. The solution was to introduce a Bluetooth headset. Using this, viewers can listen through the headset and adjust the volume independently of the main TV.
The area of accessibility design is a fascinating one because it’s one of our newer specialisms. It’s a voyage of discovery to understand the many different types of people who use our products. The challenge is to design products for all users – whether they have a disability or not.
For the elderly
For the elderly, Samsung has another set of unique requirements that shape the design decisions of its products. Here, legibility and ease of use are the order of the day. On Samsung washing machines, the text is large and simple and the controls are easy to spot. The essentials are highlighted through power controls designed as physical buttons instead of touchscreens. The Samsung Activewash displays each step of the wash cycle on an at-a-glance touch display. It gives an easy-to-read view that makes it easy to interact with.
The entire design process isn’t one that can be rushed. It takes time to craft a product that not only functions in the way it should, but also looks great doing it. The contours of each product and the materials used to make them all lean towards creating timeless style. But as well as this, there’s a need to consider the wide range of Samsung customers. They don’t just appreciate the beauty at a surface level, they also love the design in making things functional.
For children and young ones
For children, the perspective is a bit different. If increasing access was the goal for the above instances, safety and prevention are the main focus for young ones. Often, preventing children from accessing too many functions on products, a household hazard in waiting, is the focus of Samsung’s design.
With refrigerators, the Control Lock setting can be set as the default. This prevents the spoilage of food after a young toddler has wrangled the controls.
Accessibility design is a key part of what Samsung designers do and will grow in significance. Whether it’s to meet the needs of those with disabilities or those in advanced age, it’s important to perfect the smallest details. Their goal is for all users to be able to enjoy Samsung’s entire range of products equally. This is accessibility.
Source: Design Samsung