Prototyping and inventing for Bowers & Wilkins' next generation of audio products
The way people listen to music has drastically changed in recent years, we “carry” our music with us on our devices and expect seamless transitions between devices and speakers. Bowers & Wilkins have a rich history of creating quality products for the high-end audio market and asked us to help them in their shift towards the new media market - bringing the same quality to the user-experience of their innovative connected products.
Whilst we can’t share the tangible outputs of this project, we focused on several opportunity areas and built functional use-cases and experience prototypes for the following:
User-experience design of the ecosystem, designing interactions both in the physical and digital realm, designing adaptive and contextual interfaces, and in-app music management.
Looking at user-experience opportunities from various wireless technologies (Bluetooth Low Energy, RFID, Wifi, etc.).
Physical remote control with tangible and haptic feedback for in-home use.
This six month project culminated in the design, development, and internal communication of a high-fidelity functional prototype. The engagement was split into three distinct phases:
Discovery: defining goals and strategy, learning about current challenges and pain points, understanding their current product ranges and how users interact with them.
Design: this phase focussed on creating proof-of-concepts through low to medium fidelity prototypes. These were tested with users to validate each direction, with the most promising elements further developed and iterated on.
Development: taking the most successful elements of the previous phase and evolving these into a coherent product living in their ecosystem. This product was then used by Bowers & Wilkins to experience, test and convince various stakeholders (such as engineers and C-Level executives within the company, amongst others).