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What is the difference between product and industrial/UX and service designs?

product development

Disclaimer: Close but different notions.

You already know what product design (PD) is, but there are other close ideas, and it seems to us that it will be useful to clarify them. There are a number of design concepts that have similar and distinctive features. Let’s take a closer look at each of them in order to delineate the options.

Different types of design

Product vs industrial

3 distinctive features of industrial one:

  • It includes manufacturing part of the whole lifecycle;
  • Implies further mass production;
  • Often applicable to industrial goods such as machines, machine tools etc.

Conclusion: PD projects grew out of industrial one. The main distinguishing feature is mass production. The current trends in both concepts are sustainable, AI based and internet of things.

Product vs UX

3 key UX principles:

  • It is an integral part of PD development and includes less elements;
  • UX is for usability while new product design is into processes, business and cost;
  • UX never includes marketing interests, while innovative PD is often at the interface with marketing (market research, trends analysis etc).

Conclusion: Very similar ideas, advanced PD often includes UX, it takes into account the business interests and risk assessment.

Product vs service

3 main service features:

  • As the name suggests, this type is all about service (creating an optimal level of service);
  • It can be a part of post PD: working with shipping processes, customer-oriented systems, concierge programs, onboarding etс;
  • Experience is at the forefront for quality metrics (data is for PD).

Conclusion: Service option is intangible and more experience-centric.

As you can see, all of these concepts are very close with minor differences. Often, one option includes others. At the moment, there is no clear distinction between them, but everything is changing very quickly. Perhaps in the near future these types of designs will be supplemented with new features and it will become much easier to differentiate them.



March 29, 2022


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