- Exploratory Research
- User Research
- Problem Statement
- Design Principles
- Kid-friendly Workouts
- Winning Concept
- Brand Identity
- Usability Testing
Together is an iPad application to help parents raise healthier kids.
The second UX/UI assignment from the DESIGNATION program is a team project in the realm of fitness. The challenge for this project is to create a digital product that reimagines how people can adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Given these conditions, the team decided to explore the kids’ health and fitness market resulting in the development of Together—a native iOS application for the iPad.
Together focuses on helping families establish the healthy habit of cooking together as a family for a healthier lifestyle by given them recipes recommendations they can easily cook at home with their children.
Our exploratory research started by taking a look at the entire health and fitness market. We quickly discover that the adult market (21+) was very saturated and highly focus on fitness tracking devices and the quantified self—with products like the fitbit. Given these conditions, we decided to concentrate on the kids and preteen market segments (12-).
During our competitive analysis, we noticed a strong brand presence of products like kurbohealth and navi. However, taking a closer look at their users’ feedback and customers’ reviews we saw that these solutions are very dependent on technology devices and don’t address the main pain point of healthier habits formation in kids; something we find out parents are very interested in.
Knowing that we wanted to create a digital product to help kids make healthier choices we started to interview parents to better understand their goals and frustrations.
After interviewing five different parents and teachers, some common themes began to appear:
- Increase their activity level
- A wish to reduce their kids screen time
- The importance of the educational value of eating healthier meals and their nutritional value
With this data on hand, we developed an affinity map to design our target persona and to create a journey map of her frustrations. Our research landed us with two kinds of users Lisa Morales and Dana Robbins.
Lisa is an elementary school teacher. She is frustrated because she doesn’t seem to get on the same page as their students’ parents when it comes to making healthier life choices. She wants to balance the kids’ educational progress together with their physical well-being.
Dana Robbins is a real estate agent and carpool mom. She is frustrated because no matter how hard she tries her kids don’t seem to be motivated enough to try healthier foods and be more active on their own.
Given these two personas we decided to focus on Dana. Because as the parent who is in charge of the household; she is the one that can most influence her children behaviors.
Dana wants to establish long lasting healthy habits within her kids; which is particularly difficult when they aren’t making the right connections between how they feel and what they eat.
Our proposed solution for her is to develop a digital product that empowers parents to reinforce healthy behaviors without making them feel like the bad guy/gal.
Before each member of the group (Amber Bell, Libby Spencer, Jonathan Paronski and myself) started working in each individual concept for the app. We decided to establish all the design principles together:
- Actionable Advice – users get recommendations that they can actually implement at home without depending on specific locations or tools
- Collaborative Mentoring – helps parents and kids work together to stay on the same page in 1-on-1 situations—as well as when the whole family is involved
- Meaningful Empowerment – creates value by providing relevant information to the user’s goal(s) with a modern look and feel that is easy to use
- Structured Assistance – keeps the users on track by making them aware of their progress
With these principles in mind, we all then designed our own products resulting in four very different approaches. However, we always kept in mind our end user goal of having an empowering tool that will help her establish long lasting healthy habits within her kids without having to feel like the bad guy:
- Amber’s concept – a nutrition and education based iPad app to help families cook at home
- Libby’s concept – a meals and activities planning tool for kids and parents
- Jonathan’s concept – a gamification app for kids to understand the nutritional value of foods
- Irving’s concept – a kid-friendly workout app
The concept that I personally developed was Kid-friendly Workouts (kFw). A kid-friendly iOS app for parents to establish a workout routine together with their kids from the ages of 3 to 12. Integrating bodyweight exercises that they can do from the comfort of their home with zero equipment needed.
Interactive Paper Prototype | https://goo.gl/Zh3hkx
Interactive Axure RP Prototype | http://goo.gl/pKzOis
Once the results came back from the concept testing, we had a clear winner, Amber’s idea. The planning of cooking activities together with kids was the crowd favorite. Parents really like the idea of having age based recipes recommendations according to the ingredients chosen by the children.
In addition to having a winning concept to move forward with we also got some additional feedback and suggestions:
- Simpler recipes
- Easier workflows
- The desire for more visual content
Now given that we only have a single app to redesign we decided as a group to start working on a brand identity for the product. We all worked on different style tiles to have different options and multiple points of view before deciding on a final course of action.
Then the first step was choosing a name; we settled for Together because this is the primary purpose of our app. Making parents and kids work together toward a healthier lifestyle.
Keeping in mind that Dana doesn’t want to look like the bad gal when teaching her children healthier choices we develop an alien like mascot called Toby and Toby Jr. to serve as the mentor and authority figure of the application.
Finally, we decided that the best UI approach for the app was to make all the visual content very colorful and full of kid-friendly illustrations.
Having decided on a brand identity, it was time to develop the alpha version of the app. With the goal of gathering valuable user feedback before fully developing our solution. We started by defining all the users’ workflows throughout the app.
Modeling each critical step the user would have to take while exploring the application with the end goal of finding and choosing a recipe based on the selected ingredients.
From all accounts, the initial user testing was pretty successful. Parents love the idea of involving their kids in the meal planning and cooking process. The design decision of following the government programs of Let’s Move! and ChooseMyPlate was a great hit with parents since this is an idea that they are already familiar with.
Another piece of great feedback we received was the idea for additional features and the simplification of others:
- Easier navigation – for parents to be able to explore the app in a nonlinear way
- Search – for parents to be able to find recipe suggestions without having to choose the ingredients first
- Additional guidance – for displaying multiple cooking directions that are safe for kids
- Kid-friendly recipes – to motivate the children to eat healthier foods
Like any other successful app, we needed a marketing website to get users to try our product. For my personal concept of the site, I decided to use the design patterns of snap containers and page controllers. In conjunction with a fixed header and two persistence download buttons to maximize conversions.
Interactive Invision Prototype | https://invis.io/596ZUB47G
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