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UX/UI Case study - TV TIME - Adding a feature

Hello all ! This week I’m going to talk you about a new UX/UI challenge : Adding a feature in an existing mobile app 💪

What does TV TIME do ?

📺 TV TIME is an app enabling to follow up TV shows and movies, get recommendation of contents that you might like, and also be informed of the coming shows’ release date.

TV TIME counts 15 millions of users and more than 17 millions of series episodes and movies in their database (source : tvtime.com).

I really like this app, as it helps me to note in one interface what series, movies or TV shows I have watched, rate them and also read the reaction from other users.

A very original brief

For this case, I choose the application to work on, but the feature to add was imposed. Here is the brief I was assigned :

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Presentation template by Slidesgo, images created by Freepik

When I first saw the brief, honestly my first reaction was “Hmmm … that’s funny. But honestly who would use that ? 🤔

Then I told to myself “Why not after all ? We never know ! Challenge accepted !”

Audience not interested …. But … ?

The first step of my project was to check with real app users what they thought about this new feature.

Finding interviewees was not too difficult. In my entourage, especially colleagues and friends, almost everyone are series/movies consumers.

Still, the small contingency I did not anticipate was the fact that some have stopped using TV TIME app, as nowadays SVOD (Subscription Video On Demand) platforms already integrate the content tracking feature. TV TIME app were really revolutionary few years ago, but it was when Netflix did not exist yet !

Anyway, I finally found quite quickly my 6 interviewees.

And their feedback was very clear and without any ambiguity.

83% would not cancel an appointment to watch a series instead : spending time with friends and family is more precious and nowadays it’s possible to “replay” or “stream” any content at any time.

However with this user interview, I also identified an opportunity :

68% of them were though interested in adding a reminder for the release dates of their favorite series !

On top of that, I did some secondary research about the Covid crisis situation that we are living and the impact on our social life.

The key findings showed that the lockdown was emphasizing the distance with others. 😞

Based on this insights, I decided to “pivot” the initial brief by changing something not needed, into something similar which creates values for the users !

What if TV TIME could give to users opportunity to get together around series / movies and TV shows, by helping them in event organization ?

Much better than cancelling appointment and getting your mother-in-law angry, isn’t it ? ❤️

The good ideas come from the worst ideas …?

For the iteration phase, this time, I tried a new technic called “Worst ideas” combined to “Crazy 8's”.

How does it work ? It’s quite simple.

With my very fun and creative UX/UI designer colleagues Eloïse Merian and Victoria Malon Pierre, we imagined each 5 worst ideas possible for my TV TIME feature. For example : “organize an event with people who can’t bear with each others”😱

Once we got 15 really bad ideas, we picked 3 worst and turned them into a positive opposite idea !

Then for the final 3 good ideas, we did a “Crazy 8’s” session (drawing 8 crazy ideas in 8 minutes) and it gave tonnes of very cool inspirations !

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Ideation sketching session results

I loved this exercise : it’s quite surprising how it is easier to find bad ideas than the good ones. Maybe when we do that, we don’t put ourselves under pressure trying to do better ? Personally I got the impression that it helped to open my mind and I felt “free” to think whatever came to my mind, as anyway everybody would find only bad ideas 👹

And once we have the worst ideas, it’s quite simple to translate it in the opposite one to create good ideas ! You only need to be logical at this step.

The bonus of this technic : bad ideas are often synonyms of WTF situations, so we laughed a lot 😂 while working very efficiently at the same time ! And laughing is good for health !

Hereunder the user flow I obtained by assembling the coolest ideas from our ideation session :

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Presentation template by Slidesgo & Icons made by Becris, Good Ware and Freepik from Flaticon

Let’s mid-fi prototype and test !

Starting from existing screens of TV TIME application, I realized a mid-fi prototype to test the usability of my solution.

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Mid-fi prototype made in Figma

I asked to 5 users to realize tasks described in the user flow. The usability testing was organized in 3 parts :

  1. First, I simply asked the user to complete tasks on the totality of user flow, without explaining in detail or commenting his/her actions. It helped to understand if the interface and components were easily understandable or not.
  2. Then when the user finished the user flow once, I asked to come back to the first screen and I asked him/her questions on each screen : “What did you understand ? Why did you click there ? What did you like ? What didn’t you ? …” This phase helped me to validate hypothesis I noted from the first round and identify little elements to correct / optimize.
  3. To finish, I asked my users to describe their general point of view and feelings about the feature. They all answered positively “the feature is cool”, “it’s funny” … BUT when I asked then another question formulated differently (“Would you use this feature?”), the result was not that positive at all ! All my users who reacted positively few seconds before, were suddenly more hesitating : “hmmmmmm I don’t know”. Thanks to this final question, I discovered the most important insight : my feature was well-designed in terms of ergonomic but NOT ADAPTED FOR SERIES !

In fact, people have a very personal consumption of series : they prefer binge-watch or watch it alone at their own rhythm.

I leaned that the feature I designed was in fact adapted for “must-see” movies or popular TV shows like Koh-Lanta or Top Chef that people like to share with others.

It’s funny there can be a big gap between “what people say” and “what we understand” !

Anyway, thanks to many feedbacks that I gathered from the usability test, I could adapt this point in my hi-fi prototype and also many other details.

Here is the result 🥳

My hi-fi prototype : the realization contains visuals coming from Unsplash.com and Koh-Lanta show, and has been inspired from TV TIME app design guide.

What did I learned ?

UX/UI design is a really fascinating subject : you always learn new ideas by testing things and talking with people. It reminds me everyday that what you think is not what other people think, and there is no exact science in the way of using things.

Also this was a solo project. This time I did not have my super teammates 🦡🦡🦡🦡 with me. It was somehow more difficult, as I could not validate my doubts and uncertainty with others, and the work to do was much more long !

***I realized this case study in a context of educational practice of UX/UI design. The project has not been requested by TV TIME company.***

Thanks again for reading my article until the end 🙌 Hope you enjoyed it and don’t hesitate to comment !

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