Consumer as well as business spaces are making increasing demand for data visualization on mobile devices. For everything from stock price performance to sensor fluctuating, data in an organization is useful in regulating operations and enhancing processes. One of the hindrances to providing unlimited or incessant access to visual information is the remarkable reduction in the screen size. We have moved from desktop screen to smart phone screen, which is too small when compared to the screen with which we started viewing digitally.
When it comes to viewing graphs and charts, chart titles, axis labels, and other graph elements may seem insignificant on a small screen. They would not be useful to the viewer. However, it is possible to achieve impactful data visualization on mobile devices through the following tips.
Identify User’s need:
Prior to beginning a graph design on a small screen, you need to get all the information about the type of data and the format in which it must be presented so that the chart can meet the requirement of the user. For instance, while temperature can usually be depicted on line graphs, user, who wishes to compare today’s forecast with that of tomorrow, will find numerical presentation of some data points quite satisfactory than the actual chart.
It is important to know how a user will be utilizing information rather than giving importance to the form in which information is to be conveyed. This will help designers find functional solutions to the problem.
Simplify Standard Graphs:
Visualized data on mobile devices is nothing but a part of an application that was used to create a specific function. For instance, a number of banking apps depict user balances, pending payments and even classifications of different spending categories. Whenever a user engages with an application there is a defined purpose behind it. This gives context to the accessed data. This is the reason graph titles, axis labels, and other elements are usually omitted from use.
Utilize Capabilities of Mobile Device:
Mobile device is good for displaying interactive graphs. Primarily, screen orientation impacts the chart display. With portrait mode, bar chart with few data points would be displayed well and with landscape mode line graphs go well. Secondly, graph interactions provide a number of opportunities to get the user equipped with detailed information while avoiding clutter. For instance, changes in data over different time periods can easily be viewed by user by pinching and zooming the line graph. It provides a close look at the data in the past and present. With individual bar graphs, tapping might show up a modal having a precise data label for the value.
When data points are isolated from the graph, it gives user an access to detailed data information and enables to take further actions like forwarding the data, attaching a note, etc. Alternatively, a drawer can be utilized to give detailed information and slides onto the screen from side of the graph. This helps in avoiding unrequited data density and delivering clear information.
Following Best Design Practices:
Whenever a chart if being designed for an application meant to support business tasks, it is essential to ensure that the information is legible to users in their work conditions. For instance, the graph design must be able to work under different lighting conditions if the application users are going to use it in day and night shifts. When it comes to varying light conditions, it is best to go with higher contrast. Greater contrast is required especially in case of multiple data sets where it is tough to distinguish between two lines of similar hue.
Apart from all this, typography should be of appropriate size and weight for levels of importance, and also consider the information hierarchy. It is tough for users to read compressed type. In the same way, interactive graph elements, smaller than those suggested by guidelines, must be avoided. Also, assess the way in which modals and pop-ups, used to replace graphs, impact the user’s ability to gain useful information. It is must for you to analyze if the visualized data meets users needs efficiently.
All in all, it can be said that user research should be able to convey user data visualization requirements. Once the graphs are stripped down to the form in which they are usually printed, it will be possible to clear the clutter and help users to comprehend the presented information in a quick and easy manner. You need to fully avail of interactions available on mobile devices and also measure the merits and demerits of different graphing libraries available to the developers. This will ensure that the graph, presented to the users will be exciting, engaging and also informative.
Potenza Global Solutions is leading Mobile Application Development company based in India, providing a complete Mobile Apps solution.