Skills: User Research, User Persona, User Journey, Screenflow, Prototyping, Wireframing.
Tools: Adobe XD.
The challenge was done in a week long period. I had to deal with constraints that severely limited the typical user experience that most people have when finding a lost friend (i.e. no GPS, bad landmarks, etc). By working with the constraints, I had found new technology to create a new user experience that integrates location tracking into the festival experience without GPS or landmarks.
The Challenge from Zappos
You and your friends are ready and set for a full day of fun at this year’s biggest music festival. Half way into the day, you somehow get split up from the group. Unfortunately you’ve been taking pictures and posting them to social media all day long, and your phone is on the brink of dying. Being at a music festival, the venue provides very little to no cell reception to begin with and you’ve neglected to agree on any rendezvous plans.
The challenge is to conceptualize and design a solution that helps others find their friends easily in similar situations.
Research | User Personas
Emily is a college student that loves going to concerts. She often snapchats the entire concert experience. Emily gets lost easily so she relies heavily on google maps.
- help with directions
- reuniting with friends
- lost and needs to be found
Josh is a single father that has a young daughter, who loves to go to concerts. He has a close relationship with his daughter but he gets very concerned about her safety so they go to concerts together often. Josh is also not very good with technology.
- safety for daughter
- seeker and needs to find
- intuitive, easy to access, and understand technology
Research | User Journey
The problem we are trying to solve is reuniting lost friends in a music festival setting. There are several constraints to this: limited phone usage, large rowdy crowd, and poor landmarks. Right away, this tells us that GPS, tracking by phone, and loud noise makers are out of the picture. I will need to create a user experience that will assist users like Emily and Josh. Emily and Josh are both very different users. Emily is in the category of users that are getting lost and need to be found. Josh is in the category of users that are trying to seek the lost or a seeker. However, both of the users need to be reunited with the rest of their party.
At the very core of user experience is research and interaction design. Based on research, if you lose your friend at a concert, statistically, you’ll find each other a lot quicker if you are both moving. Based on a simulation, it will take 20 minutes if one person stays put and the other searches. However, if both people start looking, it will take 15 minutes to find each other.
So what does this mean? In order for you to actively enjoy the concert as much as you can, you would want to look for each other quickly. But what if the music festival covers a large area and walking from one end to the other takes an excessively long amount of time? I would want both user types, the lost and the seeker, to actively look for a designated area, thus making both users into the seeker type. This leads me to my solution…
Ideation | Low Fidelity Solution
In order to tackle the constraints of limited phone usage and a loud crowd, one way to solve this challenge is to create a interactive experience. Since the users I am designing for are unlikely to have prepared for this event, I have to assume that the only resources they have is what the festival provides. In order to attend a music festival, users must buy a ticket. The ticket is attached to the profile of the user which has their payment information. This ticket stores information such as user ID, confirmation number, and ticket number that is unique to each ticket. Therefore, I can track users through their ticket. The ticket usually comes as a form of a wristband in music festivals, which mean the user will always have this on them.
I can design an experience that makes the ticket invaluable in order to track users. For example, to buy water, food, or merchandise, the user must use their wristband and scan it to buy these items. When purchasing these items, the system will tag the user and create a timestamp and podium location log. Podium locations can also be unrelated to monetary exchanges and have the option to scan their wristband to add a location to the user’s log. They can be placed throughout the music festival.
The podium will have a UI that will let the user search their party’s log, add to the log, or edit the party by scanning their wristband. They can go to the most recent log and find their friend in an interactive map. This will cut the search time immensely. However, since this tracks the user’s location, I would need to be careful about privacy. In order to circumvent this issue, users can only look at logs if the other users are in their “party.” The party is defined by the user. Users are free to add people in their own personal party by scanning the the other user’s wristband.
The two most critical features for our user experience is the search and log function. The log function is especially important to users like Josh who needs to know the status of their daughter.
Ideation | Unknowns
There are several unknowns that could be solved by further user testing and research about the users and festival venue.
- How do tickets operate? Not every ticket distributor connects the ticket to the person.
- Where do the users get their tickets from? Some users will purchase their ticket second-hand and miss the profile assignment.
- Are users uncomfortable with sharing their log? It can be a privacy issue and some users will not be comfortable sharing.
- What if the user loses the ticket? Or it is stolen?
Solution | High Fidelity Prototype
These screens are designed to help users locate the position of their party members. The users are provided a map with that interacts with the user. The map will the user where they are currently at and the last location on the party member’s log that they are viewing. This feature of the map will help users like Emily who struggleswith directions and give them a visual guide to the festival grounds.
This screen was made for users like Josh. He cares deeply about the safety of his daughter and just a simple design addition of the safety check will keep his mind at ease. Safe also cover users that may have been separated but are doing their own independent activities. I also included options to allow the other party to know what their personal status is so that users don’t go search for the other user and accidentally pass them.