5 principles of UX/UI within AR and how you can use them

4 min read
Blog Author

5 principles of UX/UI within AR and how you can use them

Blog Author
4 min read
Introduction to the principles for UX/UI Design when creating AR experiences. Augmented Reality is another space for smart UX design, understand how to create something engaging.

User Experience Design is the process of designing something, like an AR experience, that puts the user at the centre. It takes into account the real needs of the users and helps to create a seamless delivery of information.

A good AR experience relies on UX to blend the software and hardware while fitting into the users natural environment.

At the heart of every UX element for augmented reality are interaction and visual interest. Users want to enter a virtual, augmented space and don’t want to be distracted by unimportant and unrelated information or details.

UX designers need to create a user experience that keeps users hooked. Things like engaging visuals, and using animations, colours and textures can help capture users' attention. Also, fun and easy interactions provide a sense of satisfaction when used.

Consider these five principles when creating an AR experience with good UX.

  • Environment
  • Movement
  • Onboarding
  • Interaction
  • UI (User Interface)



AR experiences are always connected to the real world, therefore the environment plays a key role in the design process. There are 4 types of space with different possible use cases - Intimate, personal, social and public.

Intimate space experiences involve a person's face, head or hands. A prominent example of intimate tracking is face filters, including wearing glasses at home.

Personal space experiences can feature real objects, people or the area around you. Examples of this are launching experiences from packaging.

Social space is where you can pan the camera further away, other people can occupy the area. This includes augmenting objects on a scale from furniture to monuments and buildings.

Public space experiences are usually anchored to specific locations with enough area to place an augmentation. An example is a series of buildings within a city that can launch a series of AR experiences.



When you design an AR experience you want to consider how it integrates with the minds of its users, both physically and psychologically. There is a limited view into the environment within an AR experience, the UI/UX designer's job is to guide the user. Navigation options or guides should be added to steer the user's gaze helping them to move around the experience. To understand the movement as a designer, you need to experiment with how your experience works in real space.



Your AR experience needs to be super user-friendly whilst also engaging. It is important to understand what the user is looking at and how they are using it. There should be a pop-up menu or set of instructions for users to successfully launch and run an experience.



Users interact with virtual objects within AR experiences, but in a way, they may not have experienced them before. There is no feedback or tactile interaction, so UI/UX designers need to understand how that impacts overall UI designs. Some of these interactions are selecting, manipulating and navigating. Selecting involves selecting one or more objects from a group. Manipulating allows users to interact with virtual objects by rotating and scaling them. Navigating helps users to move through spaces.


User Interface

The user interface can consist of both augmented reality elements and traditional screen space. As a designer, you need to think about what elements the user can interact with in both environments. Think about how you can use the UI in both environments to boost immersion, provide crucial information and enhance the AR experience.


Screen space 

Within AR experiences, screen space is at a premium, designers need to work out how best to use it. Questions like - Which objects should be on the screen at all times? What objects can be hidden until needed? How can users interact with virtual objects in the real world?


Focusing on these pillars while keeping the user in mind helps to guide the development of good UX/UI experiences. Ensure you are regularly testing your AR experiences. Make sure you understand how and where the experiences work, what it's trying to solve or provide and how the user should feel after the experience.