App Star Friday with Hendrik Sibma

At Peperzaken we develop great apps with a dedicated and awesome team. We like to call our employees App Stars. App Stars are the best in developing apps. But, what kind of apps do they use and why are these apps so amazing? Are there apps we will never find on their smartphone? In a serie of blogs we are going to figure out what makes an app awesome according to the App Stars. Hendrik Sibma, our Usability Engineer, tells you everything about his favorite apps.

Slack: team communication for the 21st century

Slack is a fast-rising workplace chat service that makes it extremely easy to talk to your colleagues without disturbing them at their desk. It is also a very easy way to communicate with team members of a project. Slack is an online platform which you can use on your computer, laptop, tablet and as an app for your smartphone. This app is one of Hendrik’s favorite apps, mainly because it suits very well with the look and feel of the web app.

“When I am not at behind desk, the app sends me push notifications if someone mentions me in a chat or sends a direct message. In this way I can respond quickly to someone if they have a question.” The app works exactly the same as the web app. Hendrik is enthusiastic about the fact that the app is quick, stable and is focused on the primary tasks of Slack. Slack knows that it is ultimately about the users of the app and to serve them as well as possible.

The app of Slack works great, but Hendrik has a minor proposal to make the app even better. “It is very difficult to see if someone is online or offline. In the web app this difference is much clearer. Maybe something to take into account for their next update.”

If you already use Slack you can download the mobile app for iOS, Android and Windows Phone (Beta). If you are not familiar with Slack we recommend you to visit their website.


IMDb: film information on the go

Hendrik knows everything about films, which film you have to watch and which movie is not worth your time. It is therefore not surprising that the app from IMDb is on his must-have app list. The app gives you access to IMDb’s comprehensive film information on the go.

“It is not only that I find the content of IMDb very interesting, because therefore I can always go to their website. IMDb has also taken into account that their users are always looking for a film, an actor or other information. They did a great job by giving users the opportunity to always type something into the search bar in the app. It doesn’t matter where in the app you are, you can always use the search bar.” Hendrik also likes that the detail view of a film is nicely bundled. “And, you have to know this, but if you long press on the ‘back button’ you can go to ‘recently viewed’ to see your search history. We call this a power user feature. For those who are not familiar with this term, a power user is someone who uses advanced features of computer hardware, operating systems, programs, or websites. You have to know this, but I really like the possibility to see which films I have recently searched for.”

Hendrik also has an idea for improving IMDb's app. “The structure of the home is cluttered, just like the homepage on the website of IMDb. As an user I want to quickly see the latest film news and which films are recently released.”

The app is available for iOS and Android.


Airbnb: where will you go next?

Home-sharing service Airbnb makes it possible to travel the world with a few simple clicks in their app. “Airbnb's website is already cool. As an UX'er I think this is a beautiful showcase. Incredibly user-experience in an app is something you should pursue. Which Airbnb definitely succeeded in.” With the app you can explore, book and go on your next holiday.

Although Hendrik has never booked a vacation with Airbnb, he is very satisfied with the app. Maybe a great opportunity for your next vacation Hendrik? The main reason that Hendrik likes the app of Airbnb is the fact that it has a beautiful, balanced design. “Especially the visual aspects of the app are very appealing. The app looks almost exactly like Airbnb’s website.” Hendrik talks about a delightful design that Airbnb has used in the development of their app. A delightful design increases the user-experience of an app. According to Hendrik such a design is not easy to develop, but it adds a whole different dimension to your app.

As an UX’er Hendrik tests an app very extensive. But, for the app of Airbnb he could not find a feature that Airbnb can improve. “The app works and looks beautiful. I did my best to look for something in the app that doesn’t work that great. I can only say that it is a beautiful and great app.”

The app is available for iOS and Android.

Geschreven door

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Tjarda Polderman

Marketing Communication Manager

18 Sep 2015