Has there been marketable research in new UI design ideas that could work across form-factors (from desktop down to smartphones on the one end and to widescreen HD TV for games on the other)? So that moving to another device does not break the experience.

Any interface elements that can help the UI to be implemented consistently and uniformly on all devices (the element behavior, not the overall display itself, since the form-factor varies from device to device) should be of great help for those not aware of the more recent developments.

I could be editing this post to include any that I happen to find in my search.

Some useful info appeared on a related question: How to adapt your web site for ...

[Related Question]: How is the people-UI in Google called?

[Related Question]: ... is it better to be consistent with the platform, or your brand?

  • is the term form factor applicable? If you mean screen-resolution, maybe you should re-format the question. Dec 25, 2011 at 18:53
  • @NaoiseGolden: Sure, it is. 'Across devices,' accounting for form-factor, resolution, input-method (key/mouse/touch-screen), too. However, my point in using 'Form-Factors' is to focus more on the device size and the aspect ratio.
    – Kris
    Dec 26, 2011 at 4:51
  • 1
    The term 'form factor' works for me. Apple provide some starting points for ipad app development: developer.apple.com/ipad/sdk
    – PhillipW
    Dec 26, 2011 at 9:58
  • 1
    Take a look at what Apple is doing with iOS and bringing those touch interactions back into OSX as of late. Might give you some ideas.
    – DA01
    Dec 27, 2011 at 5:27
  • @dnbrv The drastic edit does not seem to have helped though. :)
    – Kris
    Feb 4, 2012 at 15:26

2 Answers 2


Microsoft are pushing forwards with the Metro style that works across XBOX 360, Windows 7 Mobile and Windows 8. The Metro style makes use of tiles across each of these devices which certainly help the UI to be implemented consistently and uniformly on all devices. The tiles encapsulate other UI elements (admittedly this is mainly typographic in nature) and each tile acts like a mini app. The tiles have a consistent style, anatomy and experience that works both on the mobile devices right up to widescreen HD TV with the XBOX 360.

Listed below are the resources that I have accumulated for the Metro style, which I should mention is based on Josef Muller-Brockmann’s teachings on grid systems.

  • Sounds highly interesting. Could you add a few insights right here? Also of interest would be how Brockmann's work is helpful in versatile UX design.
    – Kris
    Jan 17, 2012 at 4:34

I would say the way to go is understanding and knowing what universal principles apply everywhere, specifically human behavior, and create widgets/UI patterns/what-have-you based off of that.

There are great libraries for UI patterns used in both worlds, maybe that would help you direct question:

  • 1
    I wouldnt really agree vde,You have to remember you are dealing with different form factors here which would define how the pattern libraries are rendered.
    – Mervin
    Jan 31, 2012 at 22:17
  • True, but that is tactical again. Understanding the underlying principles of people and their behavior across devices/platforms is almost a requirement, otherwise it is simple cut and paste. Designing for a specific device is always the best, but rarely do projects get the type of funding necessary to do this. Jan 31, 2012 at 23:37

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