How we use animation to improve the user experience

Janak, one of our iOS engineers, on how we use animation to improve the user experience.
By Team member, 12/03/2019
2 minutes read

Here at Cuvva we're making insurance simple, clear and easy-to-understand. We've designed our apps to be as intuitive and natural as possible, with all the important information exactly where you expect it. Recently we've been exploring how using animations can help achieve our goal of making a better, easier kind of insurance.

Why animations matter

When done well, animations can make interactions feel more meaningful and purposeful.

They can provide context and connections between pieces of content, give control to users, and create a friendly and playful experience.

If we can use animation to make insurance a little more fun, that's a win.

With animation, less is more

While animations can make an app experience seamless and fun, they can also have the opposite effect if overdone. Too many animations, or animations in the wrong place or at the wrong time, will be annoying and result in a bad experience.

A good animation is one that feels smooth and natural. Not drawing attention to itself, but instead helping to highlight important content and elements. Animations are just one part of the whole user experience. They shouldn't take centre stage themselves. They should be a support act for the main event.

Before adding any animations to our apps, we always ask if it has a functional purpose. Animations just for the sake of animations, once the novelty has worn off, can end up just being frustrating and annoying. People don't like being held up without a reason and an unnecessary animation will eventually be seen as an obstacle to where they're trying to go.

So, how can animations serve a functional purpose? Great question! I've put together a few examples...

"Navigational awareness"

As an app gets larger, it gets more complicated to navigate. Animation can give contextual hints about your location so you know you're in the right place. Consistency is key here. If a view disappears to the left, it should reappear from the left too. Otherwise, it could cause confusion and may even be mistaken for a completely different view.

Immediate feedback

If you've ever asked yourself, 'did I actually tap the button? Is it doing anything? Should I press it again?' Then this one's for you.

A good app gives you instant feedback on your actions. Even if it takes a little while before it loads the next bit of content, informing users that their action has been recorded is welcome reassurance.

Avoiding jump cuts

We've all been there. You press a button expecting one thing, and a completely different screen suddenly appears without context. You're left wondering, 'did I press the right button? How do I go back? What now?' If the new screen is visually similar it may even seem like nothing happened. Animations can provide the context needed here to avoid confusion.

If you want to help make insurance as it should be, then good news! We're hiring. Head over to our jobs page to see our latest openings. Or send an email to telling us why you think you'd be a great fit 🚀

Team member