I just found the post "What product designers can learn from iOS 8's iMessage changes" by Scott Hurff. It's a great post on the changes that have happened in iMessages between iOS 7 and iOS 8, so I really wanted to share it. The thing I found most interesting about it was the context of the discussion around understanding the changing habits of users. The whole perspective of the post is that Messages is the most used app on the iPhone and that Apple has taken steps to completely revamp it to better address new user behavior and expectations. The key takeaway for me, understand your customers intimately and don't be afraid to adapt to serve them better. Because if Apple is willing to completely change an app that handles 30+ billion messages sent a day, there's no excuse for anyone else.
The takeaway in Scott's own words
"Apple’s iMessage announcements can teach us a lot about the value of knowing our customers. It’s not enough to build products based on rumor, anecdote or speculation. We have to know exactly how and why our customers do what they do, and in what context they’ll be using our products.
That requires a cultural awareness of their fears, pressures, and how they’re using competing or complementary services. And finally, it requires that we as product builders respect our customer’s time and intelligence.
These iMessage features weren’t built by accident. It’s the intersection of context, respect and innovation that led Apple down this path. I don’t know about you, but I’m inspired to go do the same for my own customers."
Definitely check out the full post here.