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Eng221 Week 4

In: Other Topics

Submitted By Fricknut
Words 460
Pages 2
User Manual Critique

As our society grows more into a consumer based culture we are bombarded with new products every year and innovations in technology that can enrich our lives. However, with new products and new technology there is a need to learn how to use the new product. User manuals are an invaluable source of knowledge on how to use any product but some are better than others. A good user manual should be judged on its readability (not having huge blocks of text, complicated words etc.), it’s ability to be navigated easily, good use of visual aids and diagrams, rationally structured (simple ideas to complicated concepts) and to contain quality information. The guide I chose to examine is the user manual for the Samsung Galaxy S4 mobile phone. This user manual is very good and meets most, if not all, of the criteria to be an exceptional example of what a good user manual should be. The manual is structured in a very reasonable way. It starts off as if you had just purchased the phone and are setting it up for the first time. What the buttons do, how to install new items like a sim card, memory or battery. It then transitions into how to care for the phone, charge it, turn it on and off etc. It contains a comprehensive list of symbols that may appear on your phone and what they mean. Then it goes into how to use the more advanced features of the phone. So the manuals structure is very easy to use and follows a logical progression. The manual provides excellent use of visual aids. In the beginning diagram of the phone it is shows a front and back visual of the phone with all the parts labeled in an easy to read and easy to understand way. The manual has several other pictures and diagrams that concisely and effectively convey their meaning without excessive use of words. The manual is also very easy to navigate. The index is all linked to actual pages and it is structured in a way that is easy to find the information you are looking for. The one area this manual falls behind in is readability. While it does not contain a lot of overly complicated words some sections can become very long in their explanations of certain features. However, they do an excellent job of breaking up this information into readable bits with effective use of bullets, chunking and use of visual aids. Having an easy to understand user manual is extremely important in the growing world of consumer products and the Samsung Galaxy S4 online user manual is an extremely good example of what other user manuals should strive to be.

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