Question added by Joe Tannorella

UX and UI examples of file download notifications and alerts (e.g. when a file will take a long time to become available)


I'm working on a web-based application that has an 'export' functionality. This feature allows the authenticated end-user to download up to 1 million rows from the database.

Obviously some file generation and downloads take more time than others. This presents a couple of problems from a UX perspective:

  • Should you trigger a notification email if a download is pretty much immediately available - i.e. < 5 seconds - and downloads via the browser straight away?
  • If the answer to the above is no, then where is the cut-off between triggering notifications for downloads? Only if the file takes more than X seconds to become available? What is X in this case? What is the resultant UX?
  • Assuming we abstract ALL downloads into the notification-based approach, what does the user journey look like? Should there be a dedicated downloads page?

I'd love to see any examples of websites that have this sort of functionality. I'm struggling to find any examples from memory. I know that definitely have a downloads section, and all downloads are sent there. A user is alerted as soon as a download is available. Sometimes this is immediate, sometimes it takes many minutes.



1 answer answered on 28 Sep 2018

@Joe also I am struggeling with the same, would love to see some example sites who are successfully using this.

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