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posted by martyb on Sunday January 09, @04:44AM   Printer-friendly
from the green-with-envy dept.

https://medium.com/@_sdc/how-apple-taught-its-users-to-hate-android-through-subtle-design-cues-518cd7eda80

If you use an iPhone, you might have noticed that SMS conversations (green-bubbles) are harder to read than iMessage conversations (blue bubbles). That's not by accident — in fact, green bubbles weren't always so difficult to read.

You've probably heard of the green and blue text message bubble colors inside the iOS Messages app. On an iPhone, normal SMS text messages are colored green, while iMessage (Apple's iPhone-exclusive chat platform) conversations are colored blue. Many iPhone users shun the "green bubble" due to the fewer features provided by SMS. If you own an iPhone, you may feel the same frustration when trying to read a green-bubble chat, as they often feel harder to read than blue-bubble chats. That's no accident.

To begin, we have to take a trip back to 2011. As you may know, iMessage, along with the signature blue bubble, didn't exist until the release of iOS 5. Before iMessage was introduced, every message in the Messages app was green, as the only messaging supported at the time was SMS. Once they added iMessage to the Messages application on iOS, the blue bubbles came along with it to help differentiate between iMessage and SMS. Given that the Messages app has stuck with the same green bubble/blue bubble differentiation, it may sound like the hatred towards SMS isn't related to the color at all. However, along the way from iOS 5 to now, a tiny design change opened a user-experience chasm between SMS conversations and iMessage ones. This isn't a story about about the green or blue colors themselves — rather, it's a story about contrast, and its astonishing impact on our perceptions.


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  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by crafoo on Sunday January 09, @01:26PM (3 children)

    by crafoo (6639) on Sunday January 09, @01:26PM (#1211235)

    The spectrum is a shared resource which we grant cell phone companies and carriers to operate on, make a profit, and provide the public with useful products and services. I propose that we consider requiring all hardware and software operating on the public spectrum to be open source and fully documented. We should retain some control over our resources and demand more from companies we allow to exploit them on our behalf.

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  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 09, @03:10PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 09, @03:10PM (#1211249)
    Fuck no. Just look at all the fucked up UIs with linux. Every distro screws up something else to try to be different, because really that's all most distros CAN tweak. It's not like they're going to develop new programs. Because no money for real development.

    So everyone packages the same shit, sometimes tweaking it to make it just enough different to piss people off.

    • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Sunday January 09, @11:51PM

      by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Sunday January 09, @11:51PM (#1211349) Homepage
      So your argument that interfaces shouldn't be open source and thus tweakable by the user is that there are interfaces that are terrible? You didn't think enough about that, did you?
      --
      I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
    • (Score: 2) by Magic Oddball on Monday January 10, @02:44AM

      by Magic Oddball (3847) on Monday January 10, @02:44AM (#1211388) Journal

      Just look at all the fucked up UIs with linux. Every distro screws up something else to try to be different, because really that's all most distros CAN tweak.

      Such as? As long as you use one of the major existing graphical environments or window managers (GNOME, KDE, Xfce, etc.) the default experience is pretty much the same regardless of which distro it's run under; there have been a small handful of distros that created their own custom graphical environment, but that's a different issue far beyond "tweaking" an existing one.