“I love how my iPhone 6S Rose Gold edition abrades my eyes like discount sandpaper when I use it,” said no one ever.
Annoyance is nothing to be desired in interface or UX design. There are, however, rare instances in which frustration becomes a feature — or even a killer app. These are the tools that annoy you for a reason:
Amazon: Amazon.com is a bloated warehouse of consumer goods. Yet, thanks to a variety of filters and sorting options, it’s fairly easy to wade through the chaff. Ignore the peripheral “recommended for you” distractions, which are curated by the same crazed geriatric who organizes the yard sale tables at the church down the road, and there is surprisingly little hunting for what you want. The screen that lists Amazon Prime TV shows and movies is hard to find from the home page, the ratings are meaningless and do not add future seasons of shows you’d like to watch. When it comes to streaming and not selling, Amazon falls on the sword.
Netflix: Everything about Netflix minus the search function is annoying, which leads to a bit of a conundrum when looking for a film: Perhaps you don’t know if the movie you’re looking for is unavailable or you just don’t know the correct spelling of Glengarry Glen Ross. But then, as you would stumble on a crumpled fiver in the gutter, sometimes the suggested genres spit out dusty gems like 1998 British neo-noir film Croupier, and you find yourself having a pleasant evening with a young, bleached-blond Clive Owen.
Seatbelts: The beep that goes off if you neglect to wear a seat belt can go die in a car crash. You’ll live, though, because the only way to shut up the beep is to secure yourself.
ATMs: Let’s talk about the reminder screen that pops up at the end of an ATM transaction to ask if you would like an emailed receipt. You will never look at one of these emails, but it is good to have them in the same way it is good to have a small fire extinguisher under the kitchen sink. Do not print out paper receipts, you monster.
Tweetdeck: Tweetdeck’s columns are the best way to improve Twitter’s signal-to-noise ratio. Twitter simply remains noisy.
Skype: Even if you love that Skype lets you talk to your wayward college roommate searching for a soul outside of Perth, it makes you brute-force kill the executable file, rather than hitting the X in the upper left corner like any sane program, which is contemptible design. Except when you realize that, had you closed out of it completely, you would have missed a voice chat from grandpap.