It is shocking how often enterprise clients ask designers for a “next-generation user experience” without articulating beyond that.

Debates around measuring user experience or modernizing designs often leave UX designers trapped in a subjective spiral, struggling to prove their work’s worth. These arguments lead to inevitable back and forth with clients as we aim to hit a moving target. However, if we fail to define a next-gen user experience’s qualities, how will we ever know if our design missions are truly successful?

Much like these 10 Usability Heuristics for User Interface Design, we at Radiant decided to quantify what a next-gen UX is, so we have something measurable designers can work against.

Though metrics and KPIs help determine design quality, the degree of customer satisfaction through design impact still awaits to be discerned. Now, here are the five essential attributes of truly next-gen UX designs.


An adaptive user experience bends the technology to the needs, goals, and preferences of active users. In this case, the system usually keeps track of the user’s activities and customizes data and functions to user needs.

The idea is to give each user type a powerful and personalized experience. An adaptive UX with an intuitive design and information presentation lowers the common user’s learning curve.

For example, a business analyst’s view of an interface may have the following elements,

  • A dashboard of reports/graphs/performance metrics
  • Important market updates
  • Business messages
  • An elementary and neutral look and feel
  • Profile Information
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Image Source: Oracle Blogs

On the other hand, for a travel blogger, the UI usually,

  • Looks and feels vibrant with colorful elements like images/videos based on personal choice
  •  Displays the latest trends/news in their field
  •  Offers quick access to their work files, client messages, etc.
  •  Includes frequently used work tools (Photoshop/Instagram)
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Image Source: Collect UI

Thus, different themes and components must be visible (or invisible) and the right amount of information based on the active user’s job responsibility and persona. This ensures that the UX design is user-friendly and that components or features that don’t apply to different users are filtered. In the example above, the common system components visible for different users include message inbox, profile info, application settings, etc. Simultaneously, reports are displayed only for the business analyst, and travel videos are displayed solely for the travel blogger.

Keeping it Context-Aware & Context-Responsive

Any ideal UX design must account for the user beyond the UI; this includes:

  • Accounting for the users’ spatial and temporal context
  • Integrating with the users’ human network (business and social)

The average user will interact with one device (mobile or desktop), then revisit their activities on another, and finally finish tasks on either device throughout the day.

As UX designers, it is important to consider this type of behavior when merging user interaction with content. Two of the most common multi-device interactions are coherence and synchronization.

With coherence, the product’s core features need to look and function uniformly between devices and platforms.

Evernote exemplifies coherence as content and tasks are allowed to flow from one device to another without user friction. The functions on each device or platform are geared towards the usage of context.

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Image Source: QRCA Views

The Evernote mobile app integrates the camera to record notes and events, while the desktop version provides the user with the ability to edit and catalog entries through synchronization.

Context-appropriate interactions can help minimize the steps for users to manage spatial and temporal content.

For example, IKEA Place detects a horizontal plane and automatically augments the selected furniture in the center of the screen to fit the user’s environment.

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The UX design must be flexible enough to accommodate static, dynamic, animated, and computational spatial/temporal content based on user input and intent. We also need to account for the impact of the spatial networks on UX designs with conversational interfaces and Alexa devices.

Intuitive – Human-centric Designs

Modern designs have re-imagined the way humans, machines, and data interact. Interfaces are moving from keyboards to touchscreens, voice commands, and beyond. The key focus is on matching mental and conceptual models with the lowest friction simplicity.

Intuitive UX designs help users focus on tasks and not on how to complete them. For example, images and video feeds can authenticate individual identities and understand the context of surrounding environments.

Advanced voice capabilities facilitate interactions with complex systems in natural and effortless conversations. Moreover, by intuiting human gestures, head movements, and gazes, AI-based systems can respond to motion-based user commands. Intelligent interfaces combine computer vision, conversational voice, auditory analytics, and advanced augmented reality and virtual reality for a seamless, intuitive UX.

Intuitive dashboards display relevant information together in context, even if they don’t belong to the same information architecture bucket. With intuitive UX, users don’t have to click/jump/look around to find the information they need because of the presence of auto-recommendations, tooltips, and target messages.


Efficient UX designs create quick and straightforward pathways to establish user goals. This involves optimal utilization of resources and industry best practices to complete tasks and eliminate noise while accomplishing user goals. A common action performed on multiple accounts or components will save time and effort while helping the users concentrate on other tasks.

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Including the option to open multiple accounts will allow users to utilize the accounts required on-demand instead of waiting on the team to create individual ones.

Anticipative – Know what comes next

Based on the user’s interactions with the system, the UX design must anticipate user needs and react accordingly. This will enhance the user experience and drive more interest in the ways users interact with the system.

Cognitive UX systems utilize the power of anticipation to bring relevant data and functions to the current task based on logic, historical user activity & interaction data, and a solid assumption of the user’s expectation.

The auto-fill feature for forms on Google Chrome is a classic example of anticipating user input for cascading fields. It recollects the user’s information input (based on the username or email ID) and automatically fills in the other details to save time.

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Another predominant area that utilizes anticipatory features would be an E-commerce website or marketplace like Amazon. A user selects one or more items, and the system recommends other items logically relating to the user’s purchase.

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Image Source: Electronics for you

This could be based on a previous purchase or recommended based on other similar purchases made commonly by other users.


Here are some of the best market practices already implemented by top players regarding the five essential UX design qualities mentioned above.

Would you like to get these implemented on your UX designs professionally and make them truly next-gen? Call us today!