It is amazing to see the increasing importance of interfaces in pre-sales and sales, as well as after-sales processes. This rapid evolution is happening. It is moving quickly from being complex to being simple, and automated to being augmented.
The most prominent technology platforms are experts at developing interfaces. They make it as easy as possible for consumers.
This is the most difficult challenge for companies without a digital DNA: creating interfaces that are as good and offer the same benefits as major platforms.
All interfaces were complicated in the past. They are still difficult technologically, though some people claim that they are. It wasn’t difficult in the 1980s or 1990s.
You must be half-nerd to work with MS-DOS. Technology has never been easier. The iPhone was the first product to be released without a help function or an instruction manual.
Since then, the world has been exposed to a new wave of interfaces that are becoming less and less complex every day.
They must. It is impossible for a consumer to use something if it is too complicated. End of story. Consumers will usually give new apps 30 seconds to prove themselves.
It will be thrown out if they don’t grasp it in the 30 seconds. This is how customers judge today’s products and services.
The one-button interface has been a major development in recent years. Apps that allow you order pizza from anywhere in the world with just one button. Apps that let you order a car by pressing a single button.
Amazon Dash buttons work in the same way. Just hit the button to purchase a new supply or washing powder. The Tesla website had one button when the Tesla 3 was launched. It had a single capitalized word: “BUY”.
Simplicity is the new norm. It can be taken to extremes as well, so you may occasionally see ‘one button’ interfaces in absurd situations. There is a dispenser in Singapore where you can purchase a luxury car.
Although it looks like a bread machine in appearance, it is actually the size of an apartment building. Instead of fresh loaves, it is filled up with Lamborghinis, Ferraris, and Porsches. There is one button at the bottom.
Then you press the button, pay a few hundred thousands dollars with your credit card and voila! Your brand new car is yours. What could be easier?
From simple to fully automated
Next is the evolution of the ‘one button’ interface to the zero-button. Customers will no longer have to do anything, not even press any buttons, when this happens. All will be automatic.
Smart central heating systems as well as automatic rebooking for missed flights are examples of “zero-button” applications. The new Starbucks App allows customers to place orders verbally.
The bot will send the order to the shop so that the coffee is ready for customers when they walk in the door. A mobile app allows payment to be made automatically. All hands-free. There was not a single click.
The customer can complete a flawless transaction with Starbucks without having to wait even a second. This is what consumers today expect. This interface is worth its weight in gold in a world where time can be a scarce resource.
Amazon Go is an experiment in offline retail. Amazon opened a Seattle test store where everything works through automated interfaces. When the customer enters the store, he/she scans his Amazon App.
The customer then chooses the goods that interest him/her from the shelves and places them in his/her bag before he/she leaves. The products are not physically scanned, and there is no cash counter.
You simply walk in, grab what you want, then walk out again. Although it may seem like shoplifting at first, payment is completely automatic.
Amazon has not yet disclosed the details of this system, but experts believe it works.