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In today’s consumer-focused world, tech companies are becoming increasingly user-centric to better connect with their audiences. As a result, the stakes for creating a quality user experience have risen and continue to evolve quickly.

Whether designing for consumers or businesses, staying ahead of UX design trends is a must for tech companies. Below, the members of Forbes Technology Council share 15 ways UX design will likely change in the next few years.

1. Design will integrate full accessibility for those who are disabled.

We’re seeing UX teams adopting digital accessibility as a core competency so those with disabilities can use their products. Testing for accessibility will increasingly be actively integrated into website design and coding processes rather than being just a reactive, compliance-driven initiative. The goal is shipping fully accessible, legally sound products without slowing development velocity. – Dylan BarrellDeque Systems, Inc.

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2. The UX will become more emotionally intelligent.

We are more connected than ever: Our kids are schooled online, our doctors are online, we meet our partners online—the list goes on. The only possible response to this accelerated shift to digital is a more emotionally intelligent UX—one that is not simply designed to meet “consumer needs” but is hardwired to embrace the fact that those needs are fluid, changeable and fundamentally emotional. – Jonathan Cherki, Contentsquare

3. Interfaces will become more intuitive and natural.

The way we engage and interact with systems and applications will need to become more intuitive and natural. With advancements in artificial intelligence, machine learning and facial recognition, the UX of tomorrow needs to provide an experience that leaves the user with a feeling of satisfaction and achievement. There should be no boundary between the experiences of the physical world and the virtual world. – Ghufran ShahMetsi Technologies Ltd.MORE FOR YOUCombining Art, Technology, And Fashion: Japanese Designer Yuima Nakazato Unveils His SS21 Couture CollectionHow To Prioritize Features That Get Customers To Buy: Understanding What Influences Willingness To PayDigital Health Startup Hims & Hers Goes Public In $1.6 Billion SPAC Deal

4. Gestures, expressions and voice will replace typing and clicking.

AI and the Internet of Things are moving us toward a post-mobile world. Soon, our tech interactions will involve less typing and button-clicking—they’ll be replaced by more natural forms of expression. To make this work efficiently and effectively, we’ll turn to UX design that emphasizes natural interactiveness. The result will be a fluid experience reliant on gestures, facial recognition and voice activation. – Marc Fischer, Dogtown Media LLC

5. Designs will favor step-by-step guidance.

UX design will change from traditional form-based data entry screens to persona-based screens that guide users to the next step in a process. Context-driven AI that has scores, suggestions for the next step and guides will become the norm. Support for voice-enabled commands and device interoperability will also become more common. – Buyan Thyagarajan, Eigen X

6. The UX will evolve as the user gains familiarity with the tech.

AI will be incorporated in UX design to result in human-computer interactions that are increasingly personal. For example, a novice user might enjoy a guided UX, but when that user becomes an expert, a non-linear, unguided UX can allow them to complete a task faster. Instead of thinking about designing for a category of users, AI-enabled UX will allow designers to cater to the needs of an individual. – Mahesh Saptharishi, Motorola Solutions

7. The digital and physical worlds will increasingly intersect.

One of the key changes to UX I see is the ability to flow from online to offline data and from physical environments to fully enclosed digital spaces. This flow will need to be seamless and create a stronger experience based on who is doing what and where when they’re doing it. As digital and physical worlds intersect (via the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and virtual and augmented realities), the experiences enabled will be a new frontier. – Tim Kulp, Mind Over Machines

8. Designs will become ‘cleaner’ to simplify tasks.

I believe we will see an emphasis on simplification. Users expect to go to websites and accomplish specific tasks. When a lot is going on within a single page, this process can get tricky and even frustrating. If they can’t find what they are looking for, they will go to a competitor’s website. We will see more businesses doing things like limiting sidebar space for a cleaner look. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

9. B2B tech will become more consumerized.

The consumerization of B2B technology is well underway. Enterprise tech has been historically been sold as overlays of managed services, with UX design as an afterthought. However, today’s enterprise users expect to be able to seamlessly complete tasks without having to talk to an account rep. This is revolutionizing UX design for B2B enterprise tech. – Anneka Gupta, LiveRamp

10. Applications will be based on personas rather than roles.

Applications will increasingly become more dynamic and adaptive based on personas, rather than just being “role-based” in nature. Systems will dynamically adapt to show users more suggestions and prompts based on their typical actions and behaviors. – Matt Schmitt, Reflect Systems

11. Brands will create new multi-experience designs.

The world of UX transitioned from multichannel to omnichannel, and now the new trend is to design for multiple experiences. This changes the way every interaction is seen as an experience from the perspective of the user. The consistency of the experience while moving from one medium to another becomes more prominent. – Vilas Uchil, BullsEye Telecom

12. Consumers will demand even more personalization.

The coming years are going to bend toward personalization. People not only want apps to work well and on various platforms, but they want them to be tailored—Netflix and Twitter do this well. The next challenge is to build products that deliver expected results while also introducing new features. And user satiety is in short supply, so continuous iteration and customer listening will be paramount. – Thierry Schellenbach, Stream – Chat & Activity Feed APIs

13. Healthcare tech will start to catch up with consumer tech. 

The healthcare UX is being influenced more by consumer behavior than ever before because of Covid-19, technology advancements and other promoters. Tech leaders must have a digital transformation solution with a sound strategy that ties into all business aspects. Expect to see more focus on what other industries are doing to have not just satisfied patients but loyal patients. – Will Conaway, The HCI Group/Tech Mahindra

14. Security and privacy will be top priorities.

In the next few years, UX design will have to change to address the security and privacy concerns of both corporate users and consumers alike. UX designers can no longer ignore the market research showing that privacy and security are the top concerns for users. According to a report by the Identify Theft Resource Center, in 2019 alone, there were nearly 1,500 data breaches, exposing more than 164 million personal records. – Bob Fabien ZingaDirectly, Inc./U.S. Navy Reserve

15. CAPTCHAs will disappear.

One of the major pain points of the user experience that we should see change is the removal of CAPTCHAs that require you to solve a puzzle. These may stop some basic bots, but advanced bots, malware and human fraud easily get past. CAPTCHAs are not stopping fraud—they’re only interfering with a good user experience. There are other, far more effective technologies that can be deployed instead. – Richard Kahn, Anura Solutions, LLC

Credits: Forbes, https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2021/03/09/tech-leaders-predict-15-ways-ux-design-will-soon-change/?sh=635e903a4337