A heuristic evaluation is a usability inspection method for computer software or mobile apps that assists in identifying usability problems in the user interface design. It specifically involves evaluators examining the interface and judging its compliance with recognized usability principles. During my time at BrainStation, I was instructed to conduct one. I thought the Subway mobile app would be a good choice in practicing identifying violations.
Mobile app redesign
Subway surprisingly, on average had very little heuristic violations. With a recent update to their app, they seemed to solve most of the usability issues that plagued it. Subway had a 3.0 rating on the Google Play Store as recent as 3 months ago. While conducting the evaluation, it took awhile to start finding them. They adopted a new card style layout that takes principles from material design. Their icons are more consistent across the app and the incorporation of the Subway logo as a functional button was nice. Dimming the background when a user engages in a new task helps the user experience because it makes it easier to focus on the most pertinent information.
The violations that did take place will not impede the users ability to perform the actions that the app was designed for, but it would make the user experience less efficient and enjoyable. The inconsistency of the navbar placement throughout the app leads to a more time consuming experience. Since there is no quick way to navigate during certain screens, the user may have to go back further than they'd like in their task flow.
The use of different words to describe the same tasks on different devices is something that could confuse users who use multiple operating systems. The command for starting your order should be the same word regardless of the device that it is on. Subway has made massive strides in trying to make the experience of ordering a sandwich more engaging but still have a few details that need to be addressed.