Is Tech Too Easy to Use?

Of all the buzzwords in tech, perhaps none has been deployed with as much philosophical conviction as “frictionless.” Over the past decade or so, eliminating “friction” — the name given to any quality that makes a product more difficult or time-consuming to use — has become an obsession of the tech industry, accepted as gospel by many of the world’s largest companies.

Friction is OK. Friction means you’re making choices. It means you’re thinking. Tech companies couch the elimination of friction as “helping users,” but really they’re saying “let us make your choices for you.” Friction doesn’t hurt users; it hurts companies.

Tech (and that’s a huge, huge word—let’s say the Google/Facebook/social media world) isn’t too easy. It’s too devoid of choice.

Is Tech Too Easy to Use? | The New York Times