Slack has begun rolling out a new design for its mobile app for iOS and Android featuring improved navigation, the ability to quickly set your availability and status, an easy-to-reach compose experience and shortcuts to apps and workflows.
The updated mobile app experience comes shortly after Slack launched an update to the desktop design in March which addressed problems with usability and accessibility of some of Slack’s core features. Inconsistent entry points and complex menus buried important features and kept them underutilized, making the platform harder to learn.
Slack’s new mobile apps were developed with a similar idea in mind: to make popular features more accessible and visible, according to a company blog announcing the release.
In parallel with our efforts on desktop, we have been rethinking our mobile apps to make them easier to navigate and optimized for using Slack on the go: quickly catching up, responding to DMs and mentions, sending messages, and getting work done with the shortcuts feature. We arrived at this design through a process of user research, iteration, and feedback from participants in our Champions network.
The redesign of the mobile app also features a simpler and more organized experience that includes tabs for quicker navigation, a home screen displaying a list of conversations, easier access to direct messages, mentions and reactions, quick gesture and other ease-of-use functions.
According to Slack, its users like using direct messages to communicate, but a list of DMs were hard to reach on both mobile platforms. Recent conversations are now moved to the new tab bar.
Slack also found that during a testing phase, moving what was previously the “Activity” screen to a more prominent location and renaming it “Mentions and reactions” was a popular move.
Similarly, changing your status and availability while away from your desk is now easier, as the previous design placed these controls in hard-to-find menus.
New swipe gestures allow users to navigate between screens and new communication features make starting a new conversation or joining a call easier.
Users can send feedback on the new design within the app itself under “preferences.”