An Introduction to Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines

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An Introduction to Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines

Introduction to Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines — If on the previous article we’re talking about Google’s Material Design, this time we will talk about iOS Guideline or what’s known as HIG (Human Interface Guidelines), a system design courtesy of Apple.

Both of these design guidelines at their foundation is themed around flat-design, but both develops their own rule related to their own design. Material Design is inspired by the real word and thus its design incorporate realistic shadows. Whereas Human Interface Guidelines use a minimalistic approach such as using crisp elements, focusing on typography, and flat colours.

Human Interface Guidelines Principles

Here are some of the design principles that we should understand to design an application in this platform:

1. Aesthetic Integrity

The meaning of this principle is that the design that was created must fit to what’s its purpose is. As an example, an application that’s designed to help serious work can be designed with a soft colour, inconspicuous, and a rather simple navigation so that he user will stay focused to the work.

Meanwhile a game or other application for entertainment can use an immersive picture with a strong and striking colour so the user can feel a pleasant experience when using said app. In conclusion, the theme of an application must be fitted with the function and purpose of the application itself.

2. Consistency

This means that an app should give the same and consistent experience throughout its use on the user’s hands. This can be done by starting to use the same colour scheme, icon style, and type of font.

3. Feedback

Feedback here means the response the user receives when they do an action in an app. A good design will not make the user confused when using an app. This means that every action should have a feedback ranging from sounds, vibration, a change in colour, and et cetera.

4. User Control

The user must feel in complete control when using an app, an application can advices user of their action or warns the user.

Thus, it’s preferred to create interactive elements that’s easy to predict, confirming a destructive action, and making it easy to cancel an action. For example, if someone wants to delete something, a dialog containing “Are you sure to delete this file?” will appear and on that dialog will appear options to cancel, continue, or delete.

The Main Elements in Human Interface Guidelines

There are three main elements that becomes a necessity when designing for iOS:

1. Bars

Informing the user where they’re located in an application, providing navigation, and perhaps containing buttons or other elements for start an action and deliver information. Most of the time this can be found on the top most of the application.


This Views element contains main content that’s seen by the user, such as texts, graphic animations and interactive elements. In other words, the page of the app that you’re creating is called as a View

3. Control

This element is an element that lets user control what they’re doing in application with button and progress bar as an example.

This concludes the article regarding a short introduction to Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines, for more information you can read the manual that’s provide on Apple’s official website.

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