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Spark's compact modals

Spark, an email client software for iPhones, iPads, and Macs is designed to help people retake control of their inboxes. To do this, Spark uses a smart inbox to help people view the most important emails first and lets them defer the rest until later.

But an inbox encompasses more than just emails; it includes meeting scheduling, information organizing, and team collaboration. Here, Spark has made various improvements to these parts of its product and has announced the upgrades in a series of compact modals.

Why this is really good UX:

  • In the fast-paced and noisy digital environment, visuals communicate information better than words. Here, each modal leads with a graphical example of the feature it is referencing. This supports user compression—at speed—because it is estimated that the human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text. The user can get an idea of “what's new” with minimal time and effort.
  • The value of the new functions is distilled into the title of each modal. With a maximum of four words, Spark supports its visuals with clear, concise, and practical UX writing.
  • A fundamental part of good interaction design is to provide constant and clear feedback. The progress indicator may seem like an unimportant design pattern, but it is important because it reduces the user's uncertainty and, with just a glance, lets them understand their current status and what's to come.