The world’s most intuitive design language.
In 2014, Google created a new universal design language: Material Design. With a clean, bold look and new animation capabilities to create more responsive online interactions, Material Design is a watershed innovation in user experience. It is grounded in tactile reality, inspired by a study of paper and ink, and yet open to imagination and magic: surface and shadow suggest a physical structure to establish what can be touched and what can move. All this needed to be put in the hands of designers and developers who would build on Google’s platforms and use its APIs, promoting consistency across the digital ecosystem.
When it was time to release the Material Design standards publicly, Google tapped Huge to help bring them to life.
"They wanted a user-centric site that would exemplify the new experience standards, while serving as a reference resource with easily discoverable content."
Google needed a partner whose design capabilities could keep up with the brand’s industry-leading technology. They wanted a user-centric site that would exemplify the new experience standards, while serving as a reference resource with easily discoverable content. Huge was an intuitive choice – we had the design chops to help Google define its bold new look, and already knew how to use Google’s proprietary content management system, Goro.
Google’s UX team had designed the internal version of the spec using Google Drive, and it was dispersed across many different documents housed by departments all over the company. Huge’s task was to stay consistent with Google’s brand while making the new specifications vividly clear. To make Material Design, which comprises a high volume of information, both discoverable and digestible, the site would require a carefully structured content framework.
A fully responsive site in six weeks.
Google wanted to present Material Design at the 2014 I/O conference, just six weeks away. Huge developed a fully responsive public-facing site within the timeline. Using a highly agile development methodology, five developers worked closely with the client, technologists, UX, designers, and content strategists to complete the site on time. Huge content strategists conducted a complete audit of the internal documents, which held over 1500 assets including extensive proprietary and unlicensed material. Content Strategy set up a workflow to replace this material with licensed imagery and content and migrate finalized assets to Goro.
Our UX team worked very closely with Google to build an interface that could accommodate mobile device product shots at 100 percent, offering a useful mobile experience without sacrificing content richness. While the new website features a navigation system that allows users to jump to any article easily, including download links and cross-links that are featured right beside relevant content, the mobile site features pre-collapsed articles so that users can scroll through them quickly.
Material Design launched to acclaim at the June 2014 I/O conference.
Google’s material metaphor provides a shared language for design and engineering disciplines. Huge’s site development facilitates its implementation and demonstrates the subtle and important innovations that Material Design represents. The site will play a central role in the design and development of Google Platform apps – epitomizing new guidelines and an updated visual identity for the world’s best technology brand.