The future of product design
Good product design practices run through the entire product life cycle, and the future of product design is customization and personalization. Consumers are no longer satisfied with mass-produced, one-size-fits-all products. They want products designed specifically for them and their needs.
In the future, product designers will need to be able to create custom products quickly and efficiently. They also need to be able to create products that can be easily personalized.
But it’s not over, as product design plays an ongoing role. Not only does it improve the customer experience, but it adds complementary features and functionality in a seamless, discoverable and unobtrusive way. Brand consistency and evolution are fundamental responsibilities of product design until the end of the product life cycle.
It’s not just what the user sees on the screen. System design and process design are the key behind-the-scenes components that ultimately drive the user to view and interact with the interface design.
There are many factors that will shape the future of product design. Each of these factors will have a major impact on how future products are designed. Some of the most important include the following:
- The growing popularity of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)
- The rise of the Internet of Things (IoT)
- Sustainability is increasingly important
- The changing demographics of the global population
- User experience (UX) is increasingly important
Before the era of mass-produced manufacturing, artisans made products primarily by hand. This means there are fewer products to sell and a higher price. Then, the industrialization of manufacturing allowed companies to mass-produce products at low prices.
In order to sell their products to millions who can afford them, manufacturers turn to industrial designers to design products that are not only functional but also beautiful.
Over time, a subset of industrial design has evolved into its own category: product design. This is because industrial design today means physical products like furniture and home appliances. By contrast, product design can refer to any product—even digital virtual products such as software applications.