Firstly: a huge thanks on behalf of all of us at the UXUK Awards needs to be said to everyone who entered, won and attended the UXUK Awards 2017. The event was our best one yet, and we couldn’t have done it without you. This year’s awards took place on World Usability Day – which is apt, given the quality of the submissions – and we had nearly 200 people attending from all over the country, making it one of our busiest years ever!
Kicking off the evening was our keynote speaker, Marten Jonsson, Senior Design Manager at Google, who contemplated “designing for the next billion”. It was a great talk that raised some thought-provoking topics for the audience.
The winner of the night was undoubtedly the Beano team, who not only picked up the coveted ‘Best User Experience’ award, but also the ‘Best Entertainment & Leisure Experience’ award. The entire judging panel was impressed by how they had moved from the print medium to digital, and embraced the technology – creating a whole new experience for the users. They also did their user testing with children, which is not an easy task. Well done to all involved!
The ‘Best User Experience’ award was won by SH:24 last year, Future Learn in 2015 and BBC Sport in 2014 – so you can tell the standards are high!
Another great thing to see was the number of entrants on the shortlist using UX to make a positive impact on the offline world: whether it was in the not-for-profit space, like Age UK, Daybook by Humanly, Chron’s & Colitis UK and Entice, Engage, Educate (by Matej Kaninsky of UCL), or in the consumer-facing world, such as easyJet’s travel app.
After the ceremony, several of the teams stayed to celebrate with us – this included Rufus Leonard (who were up for ‘Best Transactional Experience’ for their work on The AA’s New Digital World), Bunnyfoot (who won ‘Best Information Experience’ alongside BIMCO) and Kallidus (winner of the ‘Best Education or Learning Experience’ category).
The entrants in every category are put through rigorous analysis by the judging panel, and all entries were reviewed and deliberated upon by a number of top-ranking UX specialists and digital experts – and this year was no exception! You can find out more about our judges by reading their Q&As.
2017 was an interesting year for our UX entrants; despite its rising popularity and use, we had no entries shortlisted in our ‘Best AR / VR Experience’ category. On the flipside, we had more student entries than ever – there were 14 projects on the shortlist – suggesting a rising interest and understanding of the importance that UX can play in websites, apps and services.
On a final note, we’d like to congratulate all of the winners of this year’s UXUK Awards, as well as those who were shortlisted. It’s work like yours that makes our Awards one of the highlights of the UX calendar. We look forward to what 2018 has in store for us!
Judge: Yaël Levey
Role: Creative Director, BBC Weather
Citymapper has completely revolutionised how I travel around cities. I think it does an excellent job of presenting you with vast amounts of information in a way that feels really accessible and simple to understand. I think they really understand their audience’s goals and needs.
Judge: John Goodall
Role: UX Consultant at Bunnyfoot
I love Spotify. It’s easy to find music I know and to discover new artists. I especially like being able to move from one device to another and continue listening where I left off. It’s the sole reason I got a mobile contract with unlimited data.
Judge: Dave Slocombe
Role: Product Owner Mobile Apps The Train Line
Waze app. Their data science driven UI that solves problems for travellers that had never been solved before is genius. MY favourite feature is the ‘leave later’ button, which shows you if your journey may be shorter if you leave later.
Judge: Paul Cooper
Role: UX Lead Vitality Insurance
I love productivity apps and websites such as Dropbox and Trello – anything that makes my life easier. But my favourite is Marvel – it enables me to build awesome prototypes that help test ideas with our users really quickly.
Judge: Ed Easton
Role: Head of Digital Design and UX Sony PlayStation
Uber & I love it for many reasons – how they’ve reinvented an industry, how simple and quick the app is to use, the availability/promptness of the cars in around London, the cleanliness of the vehicles, no stopping at the cash point and a good chat with the driver. I used them in San Francisco recently, and it was the same experience. I’d be sad to lose the beautiful design of the London Black Cab but they really need to rethink what they’re doing.
Judge: Jesse Williams
Role: Interaction Designer at Google
Asos have a super smart app. The discover flow is really nicely done, and makes sorting through their sizable catalogue really easy. It does of course mean, it’s a lot easier to spend lots of money.
Judge: Harry Brignull
Role: UX Consultant Spotify
It’s kind of nerdy but I’m really into airtable at the moment. It’s an elegantly simple relational database creation tool. These sorts of things used to be quite horrific to set up, which is why so many businesses use spreadsheets for things they were never intended for – like tracking, resourcing and workflow management. It takes a lot of clever design decision-making to take something as intimidating as a database and add UI constraints so that it can be just picked up and used without training.
Judge: Alberta Soranzo
Role: End to End Service Design Director, Lloyds Banking Group
I’m addicted to CityMapper — the amount of information packed is astounding. Being able to sync up searches, trips and places between devices allows me to plan my trips without having to leave my computer (where I do most of my calendaring), and to find them on my mobile devices when I need them.
Judge: Paul Annett
Role: Head of Digital Customer Experience, Saga
It’s an obvious and boring cliché, but I can’t dispute the usage data on my phone which shows Twitter as being the most-used app by a long way. It’s a good example of the UX being all about the content. Twitter’s made such a huge impact over the last decade, and I’m privileged to have helped shape that in a very small way while I was there.