It's a dead cert that the start of each year will see the internet filled with blog posts predicting what the top trends will be across all mediums over the coming twelve months. And with so much noise on the topic, it can be hard to distinguish which ones are likely to have an impact. With that in mind, we've scoured the latest web development, user experience (UX), and design predictions and have selected those we believe are the ones to watch out for.
Voice interaction has received a lot of air space across the board due to the rise in ownership of Amazon Echo and Google Home, as well as the likes of Siri and Google Assistant on mobiles. This kind of integration is still in its infancy, however this year we can expect to see a greater showcase of its potential and outreach, with an estimated 30 million households now owning a voice-first device.
Animations have been used a lot recently, and they'll keep going strong in 2018. When used correctly, animations can enhance webpages by complementing content and improving UX, encouraging greater engagement overall.
A picture speaks a thousand words, so how many words can an animated picture portray? From CSS animation on websites to animated GIFs widely shared on social channels, we're going to be seeing a lot more of it on mobile devices alongside greater integration of animated visuals on websites too, in a bid to keep up with audiences' appetite for funny and engaging content. With that in mind, maintaining an accessible website will be a core requirement, which could be more challenging where animations are involved.
Custom illustrations and infographics will continue to be a widely used tool to portray concepts and display data in a more fun and appealing way. They can be especially useful to help bring brands to life and make them appear more approachable to their users. There's a vast range of web technologies, such as CSS Grid, virtual reality (VR), and variable fonts which have been around for a little while now, but this year we can expect to see these technologies become more accessible, and much more widely adopted.