I'm building a navigation menu with many icons. Hovering one icon, will expand a different sub-bar while hiding the others.
The delay I've choosed of 180ms is to avoid the users to accidentally change section while moving their mouse toward a link in the sub-menu. With <100ms there's a real usability issue, people reports not being able to click on the links in the sub-menu. Increasing the delay, however, makes it feel laggy and creepy. Many users reported a bad experince at 180ms.
I think it could be a good user experience, but I still have to find the right balance between how it feels to the user and how to avoid it beeing useless.
I've searched and found many articles on human percepetion (i.e. Investigation on human visual response latency), since I think this user experience problem is more on perception and subjectivity.
I wasn't able to find in literature anything about the "magic number" of ms that will solve my issues.
I'm looking for suggestion, if anyone has ever faced my same problem or has any alternative approach to propose.
While writing I've even found this: What is the correct term for the grace period when a user unfocuses an element However there seems to be no solutions for horizontal menu and I'm still not sure this case can be considered as an hovering aim issue.
You can see it working on this DEMO: http://jsfiddle.net/xC6Bh/