A CNET News slideshow that highlighted some predecessors to the Microsoft Surface interface, contained the above photo that you wouldn't exactly expect from a multinational that prides itself on its experience design focus.
But Philips pulled it off. The photo is about as bad as you get: a bunch of researchers, looking distinctively Dutch, seemingly enjoying a family game on the Entertaible computer that Philips Research prototyped last year. The photo is also featured as top choice in the Philips Research News Center.
Philips, with all due respect, what is wrong with you to allow photos like that?So what is good technology photography in a world where the quality of the user experience is more and more what makes or breaks a product or service? Where the trick of the trade is all about understanding real people in real contexts and providing superb value to them? Where you have to get people excited and engaged by showing that a product is relevant for them?
What is photography in a world of contextual user understanding?
I decided to take a quick sample.
The Microsoft Surfacephoto gallery is definitely more professional than the Philips one, but the photos look incredibly staged and aseptic. These people are not real and one glance is enough to get the idea.
Neither is it Apple which is all about glamorizing the product itself -- with a well-manicured hand if needed.
Mark Vanderbeeken is a senior partner at Experientia, an international experience design consultancy, based in Turin, Italy. He is also the author of the successful experience design blog Putting People First. Mark is a specialist in visioning, identity development and strategic communications and worked in Italy, Denmark, the USA and Belgium. He was communications manager of Interaction Design Institute Ivrea, European communications coordinator for the World Wide Fund for Nature (or WWF), marketing director of Gwathmey Siegel & Associates Architects (USA) and chief press officer of Antwerp 93, Cultural Capital of Europe (Belgium).