Designing Audio-Haptic Experiences

Description: Learn essential sound and haptic design principles and concepts for creating meaningful and delightful experiences that engage a wider range of human senses. Discover how to combine audio and haptics, using the Taptic Engine, to add a new level of realism and improve feedback in your app or game.

What is an Audio Haptic Experience?

Some tones are so low that our ears cannot hear, however real speakers still produce a vibration that our body is still able to catch.

One of the reasons behind the iPhone Taptic Engine is to reproduce those low frequency sounds/vibrations.

The Taptic Engine works in sync with the iPhone speaker, resulting in an Audio Haptic Experience.

Three Guiding Principles


For feedback to be useful, it must be obvious what it caused it.

For example a soccer hitting a ball:

  • cause: foot colliding with the ball.
  • effect: sound of impact, feel of impact

When designing sound/haptics for your experience, think about what it’d feel/sound like if what we interact with was a physical object.


Things should feel the way they look the way they sound.


Add audio and haptics that provide clear value to your app experience.

Missing anything? Corrections? Contributions are welcome 😃


Written by

Federico Zanetello

Federico Zanetello

iOS Engineer with strong passion for Swift, minimalism, and design. When he’s not busy automating things, he can be found writing at FIVE STARS and/or playing with the latest shiny toys.