Have you noticed the new sixpack holders? They’re like a cruel practical joke on beer drinkers. Instead of nestling just under the top of the cans, so it’s easy to hook in your finger and carry a sixpack, the loops are halfway down the can. As a result when you pick up your six, the cans fall over the place.
In my other blog we talk from time to time about user interface design. A key principle is that design has to be intuitive. You can’t expect users to figure it out, especially if they’ve had a beer or two. And another thing: see that extra loop on the side of the can? It’s a handle, it turns out. A beer store owner pointed that out to me and said he just noticed several months after the design was introduced. Definitely not intuitive.
Beer drinkers seem to be getting it from all sides. There’s also a new four pack holder, for expensive craft beers. It’s a plastic plate that clamps down on the tops. You literally have to rip the beers out, with an angry tearing sound, before you can drink them. It’s totally against the mellow spirit of enjoying beer.
So the next time you see an angry beer drinker, don’t assume they lost their job or got kicked out of their house. It just could be the user interface design.