There's a clear shift or I would say evolution of interface design that relies more in motion design to make it easier for people to understand how to use the application. In addition to that motion design can enhance the visual experience tremendously. Michal Sambora has great examples of subtle and not so subtle animations to illustrate that. There are some quite interesting experiments, especially the real weather project that uses 3D to create dramatic icons for a weather app.
It is awesome to see motion graphics taking an important role on design teams across the tech industry. With product and user experience design evolving at rapid pace, motion designers have a critical importance in helping constructing the best interface for users. Some times a simple motion can help designers reduce the need for artifacts or components. Video-games have been doing this for a long time and little by little our day to day interfaces are getting there.
Motion design, and animation in general, is something I wouldn't consider to be one of my strengths. Not only due to technical knowledge, but there's something else more related with timing and natural motion that is pretty hard for me to translate into any digital format. Seeing the work that Tom Alex Buch did for Verizon Fiber makes me acknowledge that and admire people that are able to execute with precision. Especially when we are talking about stop motion animation.
Motion design is taking over and my prediction is that in a short period of time it will be a required skill for any visual designer or perhaps any product designer. I feel that understanding the principles of animation and the power that it has in driving user's attention can help designers to create simple and more effective interfaces. It also can give that feeling of friendly and playful, or just a beautiful eye candy moment. The folks over Radio are really good at creating this moments. We selected some super clever and awesome examples for you.