If you are commissioning mobile software design and development work for your product, read below…
It is great (ideal) to have UI designers design the ideal user experience and related assets. And it is important to have these UI designers be in touch with the realities, especially with respect to time-frames…
It concerns me when founder and investor expectations are set, without regard to what is practical today vs. future. It concerns me when founders hire UI designers to put together “demos” of how applications will look like, without any regard to what is practical with respect to time-frames. It concerns me when founders take these demos to investors before doing a reality check.
These demos are typically put together using Flash on the Web, setting expectations regardless of practicality, effort, time-frames, and thus cost. Asset-heavy applications and special effects, while sexy, are expensive to implement, to transfer to the handset, to execute, to build, own, and operate.
Many UI designers are Flash users, and because of this, are betting and are pushing for CS3 and Flash Lite, regardless of handset limitations (such as availability of Flash Lite across handsets and other restrictions), and cost, and time-frames, etc. I am a witness to this, and must level-set everyone's expectations in the room. Don't take me wrong, I am up for great experiences and maximizing user reach… But right now, to maximize mobile-user-reach, it is not Flash Lite; this is especially true if the target audience is the “common” user vs. high-end users (I am talking here about the U.S.).
It is great to have vision, but to sell today, to make money today, we must “stay in touch with reality”. Hire UI designers to design great experiences. Hire mobile experts to validate such designs and set boundaries, expectations and time-frames… Do all of this before presenting to investors, and setting expectations… Bound your offerings, your vision to time-frames.