• Jay Liu
Home Automation
Immersive application
  1. Why It's in This Portfolio
  2. Introduction
  3. User Personas
  4. The Problems to Be Solved
  5. Design Concept
Home Automation
Project

Home Automation

Immersive application

This application allows customer-facing personnel to assist the owner in setting up a home automation robot.

StatusPast
Contributions
  • User Research
  • Ideation
  • Storyboarding
  • Concept Art and Animation
  • Prototyping Using Blender and ShapesXR

Why It’s in This Portfolio


This piece reflects a growing trend across many industries to automate repetitive tasks using robots, drones, or automated vehicles (which I’ll refer to collectively as robots).

It also addresses common use cases relating to leveraging automation: visualizing and troubleshooting the robot’s intended behavior.

Introduction


A Caveat

The use case and designs you see for this piece are based on professional design work but modified and simplified liberally for non-disclosure reasons and better relatability.

I have also expanded significantly upon the original use case and design, adding more recently created artifacts.

Overview

My charge was to design a solution to lower the company’s operating costs associated with supporting customers, including installation, customer support, service, and expansion.

Solution Ecosystem

The solution would have several components:

PlatformPrimary UsersPurpose
Mobile AR (Phone, Tablet, or Headset)CustomerInitial setup of the robot.
Monitor robot behavior.
Troubleshoot and request support when needed.
DesktopCustomer Success
Customer Support
Light-weight views of customer installations.
VR * Customer Success
Customer Support
Deep view and analysis of customer installation.

*NOTE: the VR App is the focus of this piece

User Personas


Internal Personas

Customer Service
Customer Service
Persona

Stephen

Customer Service

Primary Goal

Diagnose and respond to support tickets.

Customer Success
Customer Success
Persona

Sara

Customer Success

Primary Goal

Proactively improve and expand home setups.

Customer Persona

Customer & Home Owner
Customer & Home Owner
Persona

Curtis

Home Owner

Primary Goal

Desires automation of repetitive tasks, such as laundry and trash collection, so that the house can run smoothly. He juggles many responsibilities at a time.

Secondary Goals

  • He requires the robot to be extremely accurate in its job execution.
  • He wants the robot to be extremely safe, never damaging anything (or injuring anyone).

Other Outcomes

  • He doesn’t want to babysit or worry about the robot getting stuck or malfunctioning.
  • He wants robots to be easy and quick to program.

Note

This persona trivializes the budget, failure tolerance, requirements for customization, etc., of the actual customer.

The Problems to Be Solved


Status Quo

Diagnosing and modifying customer setups was highly inefficient. In addition, the lack of visibility into how the robot would behave at runtime resulted in low-confidence installations and incurred travel and communication overhead.

The Concept

I designed a VR app that could streamline both Stephen’s and Sara’s workflows as they interact with customers, as illustrated in the following artifact:

Both customer support and customer success can use the VR application to gain a deep understanding of customer setups.
Both customer support and customer success can use the VR application to gain a deep understanding of customer setups.

Value Proposition

The solution lets Stephen and Sara deeply understand the customer’s home setup, which

  • gain necessary context of the customer’s environment
  • maintain a correct sense of scale, crucial for ensuring that the robot and its payload can fit within the space
  • accurately and efficiently diagnose errors and identify solutions

Additionally, the solution provided a platform to collaborate with the customer.

Design Concept


  1. Load the Customer’s Site

    User Experience Outcomes

    • See list of customer homes. Easily find the file of interest.
    • Quickly understand the customer’s situation by reviewing the customer’s setup and customer messages, if applicable.
    Customer site selection
    Customer site selection
    The loading scene displays the pertinent customer information to help Stephen or Sara gain context while waiting for the scene to load.

    The loading scene displays the pertinent customer information to help Stephen or Sara gain context while waiting for the scene to load.

    Tabletop view of customer site
    Tabletop view of customer site
  2. Start & End Calls

    User Story

    If needed, effortlessly collaborate with the customer (start and end calls).

    Start a call through a button in the hand menu. In a call, the user can see what their collaborator is looking at.

    Start a call through a button in the hand menu. In a call, the user can see what their collaborator is looking at.

  3. Transition Between Views

    User Story

    Flexibly step change views to access the customer’s context and all levels of its detail.

    The Tabletop View allows users to navigate the customer's setup at a high level.
    The user performs a pinch gesture to set where to enter immersive mode and exits immersive mode through a button in the hand menu.

    The user performs a pinch gesture to set where to enter immersive mode and exits immersive mode through a button in the hand menu.

    The Immersive View allows users to experience the customer's setup and its environmental context.
    The Immersive View allows users to experience the customer's setup and its environmental context.

Jay Liu
Written by Jay Liu, experience designer.
https://jayliu.design
© 2022, Jay Liu