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Interior Design vs Product Design: Which One to Choose?


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Are you asking yourself, “Should I study interior or product design?” Then you are not the only one. Many students get confused about these two fields, especially their scope and usability.

Both the fields have some overlapping elements. Both will demand design thinking from you and ask for a user-centric approach. While these terms seem gibberish, we are here to clarify your interior and product design queries. 

While the final choice depends on you, it is always best to make an informed decision. So, if the question “Which is better, interior design or product design?” bothers you, here’s a blog explaining these courses' differences. 

Read on to learn more about your career options.


Interior design or product design? Don’t get confused!

Before you decide whether to pursue an interior design or a product design career, you must get your basics right. Here’s a quick overview of the two fields:


What is interior design?

It is the professional practice of transforming a space that satisfies human needs. It is the art and science of creating an aesthetically pleasing environment. This field involves furniture selection, architectural detailing, light designing, color theory, and other interior design elements. 

In your interior designer career, you will use various CAD software, mood boards, hand sketches, and 3D visualization tools. You will also work with larger spaces, like a building, room, or environment.


What is product design?

It is the professional practice of creating and designing a product that solves a user’s problem. In this art, you will design a product focusing on its usability and functionality. This field involves elements like coming up with product ideas, sketching, selecting materials, creating computer-aided designs (CAD), and other aspects of product design.

You will use several sketching tools, mockup materials, software like CAD, and rapid prototyping technology like 3D printing. In your product design career, you will also work with smaller spaces or daily-use objects.


Interior design or product design: Know the differences

Here’s the answer to your question: “Which is better, interior design or product design?”:

Parameters Interior Design Product Design
Eligibility A bachelor's degree is required, ideally a B.Sc or BFA degree. After obtaining your bachelor’s degree, you must complete your master’s, an M.Sc, or MFA degree. A B.Sc or BFA is usually a 3-year course; completing a master's will take two years. For your product design career in India, you must complete your UG course, ideally a B.Des or B.F. Tech degree. After your bachelor’s degree, you must complete your master’s degree, an M.Des, M.F.Tech, or M.F.M from a reputed university.
You don't need a formal degree to start a business in this field. However, you must join a firm. You may need additional certifications or internship certifications to secure a job.
Roles and responsibilities Space planning: You need to plan how to use the available space properly to make it useful, sustainable, and aesthetically pleasing. User research and analysis: You must conduct thorough market research to understand user preferences and demands. Proper analysis after research helps design a user-friendly product.
Material selection: Your role would include choosing the design materials, colors, furniture, or accessories. Conceptualizing: As a product designer, you have to create the outline of a product, communicate the ideas with your team, sketch the product, and deliver the final item to the client.
Arrange meetings: You must hold client meetings and collaborate with other stakeholders (architects and contractors) to ensure you properly understand and deliver the client's requirements. Collaboration with stakeholders: You need to work with other stockholders in the field, such as engineers, suppliers, and manufacturers.
Continuous professional development: You must stay current with industry trends, new technological developments, and sustainable practices to ensure you can deliver quality work in a limited time. Quality assurance: You will be in charge of delivering high-quality products to the client. You must ensure the products meet quality standards and follow industry certifications and ethical grounds.
Skills required Spatial awareness: To maximize a layout's potential, you need to understand its proportions and increase its usefulness and efficiency. Innovative skills: You need to think creatively and generate creative ideas to keep your product ahead of the competition.
Communication: You must collaborate and work with several stakeholders. To ensure perfect results, you must communicate properly about ideas, concepts, client proposals, etc. Teamwork: You’d often have to collaborate with other stakeholders, such as engineers and manufacturers. You must communicate how to align the design goals with current market demands or client requirements.
Creativity: You must have a creative flair, which will help you develop innovative aesthetic designs. Technical skills: You must have specific technical skills, like UX and UI design skills, HTML, etc.
Technical proficiency: You must be proficient in design software to create detailed designs and presentations. Problem-solving: You will often encounter design issues or choose from multiple options. Thus, you must have quick problem-solving skills and critical thinking ability to move past the situation.

Interior design vs product design: The most financially rewarding choice

As an interior designer in India, your average salary can be INR 3.1 LPA. Some of the highest-paying companies for this role are:

  • HomeLane
  • Livspace
  • Team Lease
  • Design Cafe
  • Bonito Designs


With a product design career in India, you can earn INR 9.7 LPA on average. Some of the highly rewarding companies for this role are:

  • Tekion
  • Freshworks
  • Flipkart
  • Rapido
  • Faurecia



Dive into the designer world and find your calling

Choosing between these two fields can be tricky with so many overlapping elements. The two fields have many similar components and some differences addressed in this blog. Both interior design and product design are highly rewarding fields. The two demand a creative flair and certain technical awareness. 

Interior design vs product design: in this debate, the ultimate choice is yours. However, if you decide on interior design, there’s a perfect course to enroll in. The Bachelor in Interior Design program by the ITM Institute of Design & Media is an amazing option that gives you a hands-on learning experience. This 4-year program will help you build your core concepts, and you will learn from the industry experts.

Learn with us at ITM!


Frequently asked questions

1) Will I be able to switch between a product designer and interior designer career?

Yes, it is possible. Many skills are common to both fields. However, you may have to take additional training or academic courses depending on industry demands.

2) Which of the two fields will offer me more stability and job prospects?

Both of these fields will offer you a range of career opportunities. However, your job stability depends on external factors like market demand, location, specialization, etc.

3) Do I need to learn any specific software programs for interior design or product design?

Yes, you would need software proficiency in both fields. To be an interior designer, you should learn software like Revit, AutoCAD, or SketchUp. Similarly, you should learn Rhino or SolidWorks to be a proud interioran  or product design software programsprogramct designer. 

4) Are there any specializations in interior design that I can pursue?

For your interior designer career, you can specialize in the following:

  • Commercial interior designing
  • Residential interior designing
  • Light designing
  • Sustainable designing
  • Exhibit designing
  • Institutional interiors

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