Less app for it's own sake?

There's a (welcome) trend in software development at the moment to build applications that are minimal in their approach to required features. They concentrate on a specific task, or related set of tasks and how to achieve them with the least friction and impediment possible. While it's true that professional-level photo editing suites will always be complex, the average user doesn't require this.

As an example: innumerable, simpler photo editors have become available over the last few years in response to this recognition and trend towards focused needs-based development. I think, though, that the pursuit of this minimalist ideal is in some cases going a step beyond the reality of people's requirements. It feels almost like the pursuit of a fashion in many cases than the attainment of a clearer, more fluid workflow or user experience. I have come across apps for the iPhone for example where the apps often excel at minimal design, but their 'minimum features' actually only result in the reduction of a screen tap. This is noticeable in a number of recent note-taking apps, where the practical difference is that I no longer have to tap the little plus icon to get a clean page to type in. In practice this saves me nothing, the achievement is merely a spartan aesthetic and duplicate functionality.

Feeling Responsible.

App Abandonment