Crafting a UX Strategy for Wearables and the Mobile Mainframe

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Presented at Madison+UX 2014 …

Presented at Madison+UX 2014

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Google Glass, Samsung Gear, MetaWatch, Fitbit Flex, and a whole host of other wearable devices are weaving a connectivity web with a similar underlying pattern: the smartphone is emerging as the mobile mainframe. Our phones are powerful, always-on, always-connected machines that pipe data to and from these terminals (or devices). The result is an amazing collection of capabilities and experiences for the user.

I’ve spent months diving into the world of the mobile mainframe, bouncing between platforms and wearable devices. I’d like to share my own journey, highlight the powerful experiences this model provides, discuss the downsides of the mobile mainframe as it stands today. Additionally, I’ll show some simple frameworks I’ve created for making decisions around the user experience of nudges, notifications, prompts, and tasks.

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  • Great pres and some valuable insights. My gut tells me we need to move away from the wearable as an extension of the smart phone though.

    We talk about friction and making processes friction-less. An example process being:

    Smartphone notification > smart removed from pocket > smart phone unlock > smart phone content absorbed > smart phone action taken > smart phone back in pocket.

    I understand the idea that a wearable, watch for example, could potentially remove a step in this process and therefore friction. The step removed would potentially be:

    Smart phone notification > Smart watch content absorbed (partially?) > ...

    The steps that follow are where my query comes in. Are we at a place now where the full spectrum of current content (texts, videos, pics, articles, whatever) can be fully digested on 2 inches of smart watch. My gut says no.

    It seems that rather than removing friction from a process we will actually be adding another step in a process:

    Smart phone notification > Smart watch content partially absorbed > Smart phone removed from pocket > smart phone unlock (possibly this step could be removed with validation from the watch?) > smart phone content fully absorbed.

    Even worse is the idea of trying to text or email one these watches. I have seen a Creative Director in my company actively try to use his smart watch, give up and then remove the phone from his pocket.

    So, I guess the challenges are making a wearable that removes friction, takes into account content and if at all possible (and this is entirely my own personal opinion) a wearable that can stand 100% independent of a smartphone and maybe even replace it.
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  • @HoratioFisk - The idea that the author meant *actual* mainframe computers are now being replaced by mobile phones shows nicely how you've missed the messages here. I think no one has taken you up on it because it's such an obvious mistake. The title is stating that 'mobile phone is to wearable devices as mainframe computer is to network client computers'. Not that mobiles ARE mainframes in the traditional sense of the word.
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  • Another nice to look at presentation which apparently does not realize the whole thing is boiled down to 'Why does it matter'. Its called a value proposition. And 90% of wearable tech is a joke in the value proposition dept. Exceptions being medical/health monitoring and Google glass for the handicapped or military industrial use. So your phone is a mobile mainframe may be the most ludicrous statement I have seen in a while. Let me see you run an engineering team, design team, sales group, accounting payables, graphic just about anything off your Iphone. Y
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  • 1. Crafting a UX Strategy for Wearables and the Mobile Mainframe @PhilipLikens
  • 2. THE HEAD & THE HEART @PhilipLikens
  • 3. “Among the things I’ve learned is that people are becoming much more keenly aware of doing things they feel are unimportant at the expense of those that are more important. A great example is our propensity to hit the ‘Unsubscribe’ links in unwanted email messages as a more mindful approach to dealing with those ‘must have’ emails that almost always go unread…” – Tony Brice on Mindful Living @PhilipLikens
  • 4. “There are many other ways in which we’ve begun mindfully doing things different. They range from a collection of relatively small day-to- day decisions to bigger ones like the types of trips we may be taking (a common theme seems to be remote and unplugged).” – Tony Brice on Mindful Living @PhilipLikens
  • 5. THE HEAD AND THE HEART / Background • Decade and a half in Interactive Design / Dev • MFA @ SCAD in Interactive Design • Former Assoc. Prof / Assistant Director @ AiD • Created iHeartColor app • Founder of Crosstrain Camps • Currently Principal UX @ Sabre Labs Go Bees! Chewy wuz here… SJKJ!@#!9490u34jj3lcm @PhilipLikens
  • 6. THE HEAD AND THE HEART / Getting Into Wearables • Started as a Fitbit lay person • Number of intense months with wearables • Some simple frameworks • “Ok Glass, Find a Flight” • More experiments coming @PhilipLikens
  • 7. THE HEAD AND THE HEART / Trough Of Disillusionment Early Adopters ME
  • 8. Questions 1.What is it? 2.What can it do? 3.Why does it matter? 4.Where do I start? 5.How do I design for it? 6.What does it mean for our profession? 7.Where are we headed? @PhilipLikens
  • 9. WHAT IS IT? @PhilipLikens
  • 10. WHAT IS IT? / Mobile Mainframe The smartphone is emerging as the mobile mainframe. Our phones are powerful, always-on, always-connected machines that pipe data to and from these terminals (or devices). Psst… We are not in the age of the Internet of Things… It’s mostly the Internet of Thing… Namely, the Internet of Mobile Phone. @PhilipLikens
  • 11. “…And finally, users always have their smart phone so we want to make sure all these connected experiences work based on your smart phone: be it your wearables, be it your car, or like we have shown with Chrome Cast, your television…” – Google IO 2014 Keynote @PhilipLikens
  • 12. WHAT IS IT? / Wearables My focus is in body-borne devices with complex interfaces, visual displays, multiple use cases, ongoing connectivity, and some computational power. Yes, I understand wearables could include T-Shirts or “Wearable Technology” could include analog spectacles @PhilipLikens
  • 13. “The reality is that there is no such thing as UX strategy. There is only product strategy.” – Jeff Gothelf @PhilipLikens
  • 14. WHAT IS IT? / UX Strategy I don’t know if I believe that Jeff. I think it’s kind of the bridge between Business and UX - the first step but it informs business as much as business informs it. If only I could find someone else who feels the way I do. @PhilipLikens
  • 15. "User Experience strategy is about taking the information about the user and information about the business and turning that into an approach for the User Experience. It overlaps with the role of a good Business Analysis…” – @PhilipLikens
  • 16. WHAT CAN IT DO? @PhilipLikens
  • 17. Log WHAT CAN IT DO? / Nike Fuel Band
  • 18. Notify MetaWatch WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 19. Communicate Jawbone Icon WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 20. Record Google Glass WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 21. Find Pebble WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 22. Consume Bragi Dash WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 23. Control Samsung Gear WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 24. Verify Nymi WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 25. Comfort Cuff WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 26. Others Mimu glove WHAT CAN IT DO? /
  • 27. WHAT CAN IT DO? / Powerful Experiences • Notifications on my wrist without having to look at my phone • Doing simple tasks on my wrist without having to access my phone @PhilipLikens
  • 28. WHAT CAN IT DO? / Drawbacks • Overwhelmed with notifications • Connectivity challenges • Fashion • More devices weighing me down @PhilipLikens
  • 29. WHY DOES IT MATTER? @PhilipLikens
  • 30. Adoption Rates Of Tech WHY DOES IT MATTER? /
  • 31. “Across the world, people check their Android phones an average of 125 times every day.” – Google IO 2014 @PhilipLikens
  • 32. WHY DOES IT MATTER? / My Take Wearables are the emerging front-end for mobile design. Next embeddables? @PhilipLikens
  • 33. WHERE DO I START? @PhilipLikens
  • 34. WHERE DO I START? / Google • Contextually Aware • Voice Enabled • Seamless • Mobile First Apple and Google seems to be diverging in their approaches. @PhilipLikens
  • 35. “Our sales director left yesterday because he took a contract from Apple to launch the iWatch” – Jean-Claude Biver, Head of LVMH’s Luxury Watch Division @PhilipLikens
  • 36. WHERE DO I START? / Apple Speculation • Maybe early Fall? • Could be awesome? • Could use Today widgets as a jumping off point? @PhilipLikens
  • 37. WHERE DO I START? / Pebble • Nov 2013 adopted a new SDK platform • Ready to go • Should be relevant for a while @PhilipLikens
  • 38. WHERE DO I START? / Hold On Heads Up • As a consumer, don’t know what to do with it now • Directions is the killer app • Need better use cases • Must get more fashionable • Must get more discrete • Industrial / Business path to adoption? @PhilipLikens
  • 39. HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? @PhilipLikens
  • 40. HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? / Map Information Needs • Helpful start • Make note of potential environment(s) •We used a Graffiti Board to gather ideas from within Sabre concerning Traveler Needs on the day of travel ex. What information / tasks do you need access to when you’re sitting at your gate? @PhilipLikens
  • 41. Notifications HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? /
  • 42. HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? / Threshold For Action • There is a threshold for action moving from a wearable to your phone. • Dig the phone out of your pocket (or find it) • Unlock it • Find the app • Do the task •Wear’s “Open on Phone” helps • Apple’s continuity extended to wearables? @PhilipLikens
  • 43. Taking Action HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? /
  • 44. Taking Action HOW DO I DESIGN FOR IT? /
  • 46. WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR OUR PROFESSION? / Design For Voice • Voice will be a huge part of the next 5-10 years. Google is betting on it. Apple seems to be as well. • Are we as UXers glorified Graphic Designers or truly concerned with UX? •We have to understand the UX of voice. @PhilipLikens
  • 47. WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR OUR PROFESSION? / Design With Context • Consider the environment • Leverage sensors • Be careful of speculation @PhilipLikens
  • 48. WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR OUR PROFESSION? / Design For Continuity • Think about what you’re calling the user to do • Make it easy for them to pick up where they left off • Assume interruption @PhilipLikens
  • 49. WHERE ARE WE HEADED? @PhilipLikens
  • 50. WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / My Future •Watch w/ Cell: notifications / small tasks / emergencies • BLE Headset: audio content consumption, talking on the phone, small content creation • 7” Tablet w/ Cell: creation + consumption • Laptop: creation + consumption power use @PhilipLikens
  • 51. In Everyday Life voice/watch/phone/tablet/car/laptop Kids: Commute: Walking: Desk: Meetings: Lunch: Evenings: + + + - - - + + + + + + + - + + + + + + + - + - + + + + - + - - - - - - - - + + - + WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / @PhilipLikens
  • 52. In Washington DC voice/watch/phone/tablet/car/laptop Train: Walking: Airport: - + - + + + + + + + - + - - - - - + WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / @PhilipLikens
  • 53. WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / Not Sure When It Will Happen • It benefits major manufacturers to tether devices together • Need a disruptive outsider (as Apple was with the iPhone) @PhilipLikens
  • 54. WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / Os Convergence • Because of the non-native connectivity, I think we’ll have an OS funnel • Apple • Google’s Android Wear • Tizen • MetaWatch • Pebble • 2-3 major platforms - my guess is Apple, Google, Pebble (lo-fi / underground option) @PhilipLikens
  • 55. WHERE ARE WE HEADED? / Other Thoughts On The Future • Fashion Matters • OS consolidation brings better UX • Fitness bands largely disappear • Connectivity has to resolve before mass adoption • Touch (only) is not the holy grail @PhilipLikens
  • 56. Thank You. @PhilipLikens