Successful App Redesigns

Case Study: Successful App Redesigns and Their Impact

App Redesign: Instagram (2012)

Background: In 2012, Instagram underwent a significant redesign that included a refreshed logo and a complete overhaul of the app's user interface and user experience. The redesign aimed to make the app more visually appealing, user-friendly, and responsive.


  • Visual Identity: The most noticeable change was the updated logo, which moved from a skeuomorphic camera icon to a simple, flat design. While the new logo received mixed reviews initially, it ultimately became an iconic symbol for the platform.
  • User Engagement: The redesigned app introduced a simpler and cleaner interface, making it easier for users to navigate and engage with content. User engagement increased significantly.
  • Simplification: Instagram's redesign eliminated clutter, simplified the design, and focused on the core function of sharing photos. This helped users focus on content creation and consumption.
  • Growth: After the redesign, Instagram's user base grew rapidly, reaching over 300 million users by the end of 2014. The app's popularity soared, and it became one of the most prominent social media platforms.

App Redesign: Snapchat (2020)

Background: In 2020, Snapchat rolled out a major app redesign with a focus on user engagement and discoverability. The redesign aimed to improve user retention and drive monetization.


  • User Navigation: The redesign reorganized the app's navigation by separating content from friends and content from publishers, making it easier for users to find and engage with friends' stories and discover new content.
  • Personalization: Snapchat introduced personalized content recommendations, creating a more tailored user experience. This personalization increased the time users spent in the app.
  • Improved Discoverability: The redesigned interface placed more emphasis on content discovery, making it easier for users to explore and engage with content from a wider range of publishers. This boosted content consumption.
  • User Growth: The redesign contributed to Snapchat's user growth, attracting new users and retaining existing ones. The platform's daily active users increased to 249 million in Q3 2020.

App Redesign: Airbnb (2021)

Background: In 2021, Airbnb revamped its app to reflect the evolving travel landscape in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The redesign focused on flexibility and safety, as well as promoting local and long-term stays.


  • Flexible Booking: The redesigned app introduced more flexible booking options, allowing users to book stays for various durations, from one night to several months. This flexibility catered to changing travel needs.
  • Local Focus: Airbnb encouraged users to explore their local surroundings with features like "Live Anywhere on Airbnb" and "Explore Nearby." This promoted local travel and appealed to users looking for alternatives to traditional vacations.
  • Safety and Cleaning Protocols: The app emphasized safety measures, such as enhanced cleaning protocols and flexible cancellation policies, to address travelers' concerns during the pandemic.
  • Recovery and Growth: Airbnb's app redesign was aligned with the recovery of the travel industry, helping the platform regain momentum and growth after a challenging period.

These case studies demonstrate the significant impact that app redesigns can have on user engagement, growth, and overall success. Successful redesigns align with user needs, simplify interfaces, enhance user experiences, and reflect the evolving market landscape. Regularly assessing and updating app design is crucial to staying competitive and meeting user expectations.