The Use of Color In Your IOS App

As our interactions happen increasingly in the digital realm, color psychology has become entrenched in the way we experience the world.

Apple’s IOS 7 recognizes this and allows users to customize the colors of their apps. In designing your app or website, you want total control in how the user experiences your brand. The color scheme will subconsciously affect users. It’s no mistake Facebook and Twitter, two of the biggest social media websites in the world, utilize blue as their key color. Blue is calming. Blue makes you think of the sky or the ocean, those serene moments you have to appreciate the beauty of the world. The use of blue, in either case, makes you want to return, creating a soothing effect. In situations of boredom or social awkwardness, we want to return to the social tranquility of Twitter and Facebook, where the user has total control of to whom, what and when he/she responds.

Whether or not you are synesthetic, any given color triggers a specific response, on which a UX web/app designer must capitalize.

Synesthesia is the neurological phenomenon in which one sense triggers another. For example, when musicians like Kanye West explain how they are able to SEE sounds in colors, thus the way they experience creating music feels to them more like painting, a “sonic landscape”. Synesthesia is a philosophically mind-bending piece of evidence toward the interconnected manner in which we experience the world–our five senses interpreting different aspects of the same information in service of creating a physical truth. It’s also vital to your app design.

As with all aspects of UX app and web design, use of color serves two purposes: aesthetic, and functionality. Aesthetically, you want to use color create the proper emotional response to your brand. IOS 7 recognizes current color trends and capitalizes on the emotional landscape to benefit the user. With the recession and political landscape, U.S. consumers are gravitating toward brighter, more radiant colors for comfort. IOS 7 allows users to customize their color palate, leaning toward nuanced, joyous colors such as lighter blues and purples, as well as red-tinged oranges.

In creating your app, you must take into account the association users have with the colors you use to create the best possible user experience. Green, like blue, is associated with nature, as well as intelligence, and wealth. Purple is regal, lavish, as well as feminine. Pink is ultra-feminine, but also stylish. Red is an alarming and stimulating color. It’s attention-grabbing, stressful and threatening, but also confident. Stop signs and red lights are obvious uses red’s potential. Yellow is equally stimulating, though less obnoxious. Yellow is known to increase concentration. Also vital is the use of white, black, and grey to create negative space. A color overload seems unprofessional, it’s important to focus on two or three main colors in your scheme. The right color scheme for your brand depends entirely on your corporate identity.  At Mystic Media, we’re confident we can put our finger to the pulse of your company or application idea to create the best possible digital reflection.

With regard to functionality, color is vital to separating the various sections of your application or website to increase usability. Skeumorphism is officially old-fashioned. In the era of flat design, users will decipher the functions of buttons and links based on color. Users utilize color more than they do text in exploring the digital world, thus its important to color-code the different sections of your app or website based on theme. USA Today recently redesigned their website, color-coding each of the sections and drifting away from the idea of making the digital reading experience mimic the print. The IOS 7 separates apps based on colors customized by the user. Although you could allow users to customize your color scheme, at Mystic Media, we believe it’s more confident to establish your brand through a tactical color scheme.

Ultimately, the color scheme is a reflection of the personality of your company. It’s important to trust your instincts. Or trust ours at Mystic Media. We’re dedicated collaborators confident in both taking direction and creating aesthetics to maximize the potential of your app or website.

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