Design case study :
The one digit dial phone

SOS telephone on an alpine road in Switzerland

Seen in an SOS box on an alpine road in Switzerland. A very simple user interface. No need to read the f... manual here, which is a good thing. On the other hand, the dial must have been manufactured specially for this device. Why provide a dial when a simple button would have done the job? Or, even simpler, taking the handset off the hook? So, is this another case of Why make it complicated when you can make it impossible? No, in my opinion the design is very good and intuitive. The device is meant to be used in emergency situations and under stress. So, providing a familiar interface simplified to the bare minimum is a great idea.

Creative Commons License
One digit dial phone by Jean-Paul Vetterli is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.