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Smart Remote Application for TV SetTop Box

·761 words·4 mins

Introduction #

India is one of the major consumers of television entertainment. On average, every Indian spends more than 2 hours watching TV daily. But recent days it has steeply declined due to trending Streaming services (like Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc.) Though they need an expensive subscription and high-speed internet, people are still attracted to it because of the immense experience and quality of entertainment.

But not to deny, Satellite channels are still a cheap source of entertainment for a country like India with a wide variety of options. The recent changes like Making the STB compulsory has severely hampered the experience. The poor Advertisement strategy and Product positioning not giving enough privileges to the user of owning the service.

We a team of three (Bala MMaryada Palaskar & Teja) studied the market and user expectation and came up with a solution which can bring improvement on the product satisfaction, within the currently available technology. We followed the 5 step UCD method.

Discovery #

User Shadowing #

We started our research by comparing the operation of various Set-Top box and the key challenges. We observed users operating them at their natural location and had a conversation with them to know their needs and want. Here are some of the key issues which we have identified.

Competitor Analysis #

User Research #

Persona #

Though it is a wide audience group project we wanted to target a Highly Desperate Users (HDU) group who would encourage and try new ideas easily. We decided to focus on the age group between 24–35. Based on the user research we have created a persona for whom we wanted to solve the problem.

User Journey #

Ideation #

To design a mobile app that would connect with the Set-Top box of any kind via Wi-Fi hotspot. With user info, the app can download their subscription details and the channel info. Users should pair with the device for the first time and can be used whenever they are within the Wi-Fi zone. Multiple TVs can also be paired with a different profile. In the below illustration we have demonstrated how each device would be connected.

Illustration explains how the mobile with connect the device
Illustration explains how the mobile with connect the device

We have visualized that the product would be built with the following features and functionalities

  1. Sync the usage data with the app once connected
  2. Able to control the device via Wi-Fi
  3. Download channel list based on user subscription
  4. View the complete program guide
  5. Pairing multiple TVs
  6. Setting reminder for a favorite program
  7. Sharing favorite programs with others
  8. Program Rating, Review, Live poll, playing previous episodes, etc.
  9. Playing games, viewing movies on demand, etc.

User Flow #

Based on the features we have created the following user flow for the app.

Wire-frame #

To test our idea we have created a Low Fidelity Wire-frame to get the early feedback from the user. Since it is interacting with the TV we have created the wireframe for TV to simulate the actual environment.

Design #

With the feedback, we collected from the user we created the final mockups. We made it interactive using Flinto and tested it again with the user. The following key features are designed on the mockup. The app should be configured with at least one device to operate. After configuration user can control the device via Wi-Fi, check program schedules, channel review, etc. Users can set a reminder for upcoming programs. Give ratings, polling, feedback, and other interactive options.

Testing #

With the interactive prototype, we tested with the user to get their feedback. The feasibility of the application can be valid at this stage itself.

We tested the user with the following tasks

  1. How would you connect the TV?
  2. How would it look for a program happening on a specific channel?
  3. How can they play a previous episode of a program?
  4. How would they set a reminder for their favorite program?
  5. How would they pay a subscription?
  6. Change the mobile number of the account holder?
  7. Play a Music Video of your interest?
  8. Increase the volume of the TV?
  9. Hear the TV sound on your mobile headset
  10. Write a review for a program?

Future Scope #

Scope for further improvement

Test results are fairly good. The majority of the user can find the core functions self-evident. Based on the feedback we have the scope for the following improvements.

  1. Ability to see the scorecard text commentary for sport channels
  2. Play multi-player games on TV
  3. Doing video calls etc

Thanks for reading any comments are welcome. Please get in touch with me at snmbala@gmail.com