I'm going off on two tangents here that may or may be related to each
other and the original post. Sorry. :-)
All this chatter about battery life is reminding me of an awesome
presentation I saw at CHI 07: sustainable design. Maybe some of you saw
this presentation as well. To summarize - what impact do the designs we
create have on the environment around us? Especially those of you
designing tangible products like mobile phones.
Pauric asked if charging a product is part of the holistic experience of
using it. I think it clearly is, just by the amount of discussion today
about charging the iPhone.
So, to bring this together: what role do (or should) interaction
designers play when it comes to things like battery life and what does
it have to do with sustainable design? Would any of you who have the
iPhone trade out some of the battery sucking functionality in exchange
for a better experience with keeping the darn thing charged? Maybe less
functionality and a better experience now with the iPhone would
encourage further adoption in the future, when the battery issue
improves. I don't know, just asking the question.
What does it have to with sustainable design? Battery chargers consume
electricity, even when not plugged into a phone. Most people, including
me, leave the charger plugged into the wall and hook it up to the phone
when needed. This has an impact on our environment. So maybe an
interaction designer should have stepped in and encouraged apple to come
up with a charger that doesn't drain electricity from your wall outlet
when you have it plugged in but aren't actually charging the phone.
Maybe interaction design needs to be expanded to consider not just how
users interact with a product, but how that product interacts with the
environment around it.