Now a days User Experience and Usability have become synonymous, BUT these two fields are clearly different.
So the answer to the title ” Are usability and User Experience Synomyms” is big “NO”.
But Why answer is “No” ?
User Experience addresses how a user feels while using the system. User experience is about matching the user mental model.
Usability is about user-friendliness and efficiency of the interface.
Basically, Usability is big part of User Experience and plays a major role in experiences that are effective and pleasant.
Usability answers the question,” Can the user accomplish their goal ?“, while
User Experience answers the question, “Did the user had delightful experience while achieving the goal ?”
in case of a online retail store, the UX will be the experience from selecting product to the delivery of the product, end-to-end.
Thus UX is a combination of Information Architecture, Content, Branding and Usability of the product. ( there can be more parameters to this). So better the usability is, better the user experience.
Some good links to learn read more on this –
- Real good link , Difference between usability and user experience – http://www.userjourneys.com/blog/difference-ux-usability/
- Battle between user experience and usability – http://www.baekdal.com/insights/usabilty-vs-user-experience-battle