Prompted to think outside the box and design a new mobile application that utilizes real time engagement features, our team combined creativity with social values to direct our ideation process. Since the context of our challenge was a 24-hour hackathon, we were limited in our research to discover opportunities in the market to use a competitive analysis approach. Viewing this “limitation” as an opportunity to look inwards, our team prototyped a product valuable to everyday people rather than as a response to typical market research.
We were able to do this by focusing on two goals: responding to current social climate and its needs, and observing technology’s role in society and recognizing room for improvement.
For this design challenge, my team consisted of my colleagues, Jeanette Andrews, Moe Hay Mar Kaung and I. As project manager and lead designer, I developed our product concept and created our prototype, managing UX designs. Jeanette beautifully oversaw our UI and user flow. Moe Hay was lead UX Researcher and Strategist and did a wonderful job gathering insights and developing our qualitative research process, and handling our final pitch deck.
Reflecting on the gaps in social media services that cater to younger users, we thought about the way activism has utilized social media to share important, sensitive information with millions of people around the globe. During our 24-hour challenge, we conducted 6 interviews with younger activists of color who utilize social media to share their experiences online.
Protestors who are actively filming incidents or eventful moments at a protest do so to ensure they have video proof of anything that might happen, which they cannot always predict. Their videos are not always high quality, well-framed, and most importantly, mindful of what they’re catching on camera.
Users are always using native filming apps or social media streaming to share what they see. They are used to handling a mobile device in these situations, but struggle to focus on their safety and their recording at the same time.
How do we design for users in highly-stimulated environments?
Not because of our 24-hour prototyping limit, but because of the nature of our product, we needed to simplify as much as possible and only include what was necessary.
Our decisions on app features were dependent on Agora.io’s real-time engagement features which were required to be the core feature of our app idea. We utilized facial recognition, object detection, and video/audio streaming to develop our overall solution and specific features.
Throughout our design process, we kept our main challenge in mind. This allowed us to focus on interactive design's role in our design process, as we gained insight into how potential users may engage with an app like ours based on their mixed experiences with existing streaming apps (Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, etc). I'll discuss how this translated to our design later in Design Decisions.
We faced a challenge that was new to our team, which made this project an immensely valuable experience. Our users were in highly stimulated environments and at threat of danger or losing access to their devices. This is not a usual concern when creating designs, and our team was put to think creatively and empathetically in order to create an effective app design.