Do you buy ugly software?

10 years ago from , Implementation Consultant at Smarter Remarketer

The website could be ugly, maybe the app itself looks terrible. Even though you know it could be better, does it serve its purpose? Is it worth the money?


  • Jules HolleboomJules Holleboom, 10 years ago

    I think using good software with great (animated) UI design makes you feel better. So yes, to me it's worth the money if I'm enjoying it.

    4 points
  • Sean JaggerSean Jagger, 10 years ago

    I just call it Photoshop.

    2 points
  • Ernest Ojeh, 10 years ago

    I cannot buy or use any software that has an ugly interface. Heck, I can even uninstall a software on my phone just for having an ugly icon.

    I have this data card software that has a not-so-bad UI on my Mac but their icon didn't really look good, so i redesigned their icon and replaced it.

    Basically, if anything doesn't look good, i have a hard time using it. And that applies to anything. Not just software.

    2 points
  • Connor Tomas O'BrienConnor Tomas O'Brien, 10 years ago

    In general, I'm willing to tolerate a certain lack of polish if a piece of software is a utility created for a niche use-case. If there aren't many users, I can understand why a developer wouldn't want to justify the cost in polishing the UI: it's just not going to be worth the investment. For example, I run some pretty ugly-looking software to manage multiple screen settings on OS X, but that's okay: it does what I need it to do. You can extend this to most enterprise software - it unfortunately doesn't make sense to focus heavily on the UI, because improving the user experience has no real payoff.

    On the other hand, if a piece of software is built for a general audience (ie most App Store apps) and it has competitors, an "ugly" UI sets off real alarm bells for me. If a market is crowded and there's lots to choose from (for example: email apps, word processors, CMS systems), I'll immediately discount those apps that don't present well in a screenshot.

    1 point
  • Tierney CyrenTierney Cyren, 10 years ago

    Nope. If they can't get their stuff together and get an intelligently designed site for their customers, why should I pay them when they clearly don't care as much as they could about me?

    1 point
    • Tierney CyrenTierney Cyren, 10 years ago

      or app*

      0 points
    • Eric BoyerEric Boyer, 10 years ago

      Heh. There is software that is extremely well developed, and just arn't aware of good design, or what that even means. It doesnt mean they don't care... its just a world they haven't stepped into. Get serious.

      0 points
  • Fred YatesFred Yates, 10 years ago

    I don't think good software should be avoided because it might not be visually appealing but personally I can't use something that doesn't look good. It's definitely from my background and training as a designer and sometimes it feels more like a curse than a blessing.

    There are times I stroll through the grocery store wishing I could ignore what the font treatment on every single piece of food packaging I was contemplating buying and just buy the food! It makes a lot of observation in life more tedious than it really should be but at the same time there's so much more to discover in the world when you are actually aware of cues to look for.

    0 points
  • Daniel HaimDaniel Haim, 10 years ago

    I guess a great example to this could be Screaming Frog, probably the best SEO softwares to date with really basic design. To answer your question: of course.

    0 points
  • Adam Patarino, 10 years ago

    In general design has an important role in my purchasing decisions. Well designed software and it's promoting website often suggest the software is up to date and interested in bringing a really great experience.

    0 points
  • Nick WNick W, 10 years ago

    I've found "ugly" software that's still well designed in the sense that it's highly functional and usable.

    Usually aesthetics really don't matter to me (unless it's an extreme), I'm more concerned about function/UI designer. That being said, I have found I will favour a product that has more polish than another if I'm choosing to buy something and it is close.

    0 points
  • Ryan Tvenge, 10 years ago

    I try not to have aesthetics get in the way of me buying useful software. That said, if two pieces of software are comparable, I'll go with the better designed one. This is the only reason I picked Pandora over Slacker (although slacker did get a nice redesign not-so-long-ago).

    0 points