Digital design philosophy: Glowing reviews for the Material Design app

By Mathias Winther Klausen | Nov 17 2015 | Insights

Android News, part 2

Google recently presented Material Design, its new design and layout guidelines for Android. The Android platform has risen several levels with these new guidelines, and has provided designers and graphic designers with a unique opportunity to create a completely new experience for Android users.

Design and functionality at the readers' fingertips

With a mixture of a new design language, eight years' experience in the development of digital products for the media industry, 250 years of newspaper traditions and the daily servicing of hundreds of thousands of readers throughout all of Europe, you get the components, which when combined, form the new Visiolink Material Design App.

In June this year, the North German publishing house MH:N brought out a total of four brand new Android Apps, and readers have welcomed the new design and improved functionality with handsome ratings and glowing reviews in Google Play:

"The comprehensive update in the new design has succeeded really well. It has become substantially clearer and more trendy!", writes one user in their review on Google Play.

Now the readers can enjoy even more titles, which have been published on the new platform. So far some 15 publishing houses have opted to have their app produced in the new Material Design, all of which are experiencing a significant improvement in their ratings on Google Play, as shown in the illustration below.

Ratings_Android Material Design App_SHZ

Digital trickery and design philosophy

As a creative pivot in the team behind the new Android app, graphic designer Julie Rüsz Nielsen has, with a clear design philosophy and a fair portion of digital trickery, created an expression that is both aesthetic and functional, and which has now been realised, for the benefit of the reader:

"The reader should feel that the design and functionality of the app have moved to another level and feel intuitive. The user should have a realistic experience and feel almost like the content is placed on a card with the physical properties of paper. Therefore their actions, for example clicks, swipes and tabs, will also create a natural and expected reaction," says Julie Rüsz Nielsen.

Julie Rüsz Nielsen_Android Material DesignGraphic designer at Visiolink, Julie Rüsz Nielsen 

Julie found the inspiration in the world of Google's Material Design, which she has truly let get under her skin during the development process. The app is designed from scratch, and with input from both readers and people in the industry, it has succeeded in capturing the essence of digital newspaper reading in the app. An app, that is both radically different and easily recognisable compared to Visiolink's previous Android app. Julie Rüsz Nielsen has this to say about the process from idea to final design:

"The most challenging thing has undoubtedly been to sort through the many creative and attractive design suggestions from Google and other inspiration sources and transform them into a useable design, which complements the newspaper's centuries-old tradition. The app does not necessarily need eye-catching images and videos as its primary focus, but must simply be able to contain the front pages of the newspaper."

That the readers have given the solutions available so far such a good reception confirms that the app's design and functionality is a success. We are continuing to devote our full attention to improving the app even further, so that we can spoil the reader with a marvellous reading experience and push back the limits for types of content. For example, we are currently working on integrating demo editions and free publications into the app.


See the video or get a detailed guide for the Material Design app
If you would like to see the app in more detail, then we have produced a short video describing the many possibilities it offers. In addition, you can get a comprehensive review of its features and functionalities by downloading our guide to the Material Design App.


WATCH video about the
Visiolink Material Design App

Download Android Material Design Guide here

Mathias Winther Klausen


Mathias Winther Klausen

Product Manager