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Weather App For Elderly People in Thailand


Date:
April 24, 2019

case study

UX design and UI Design

problem statement

Online research led me to two conclusions: one, that life’s benefits for elderly people. And two, that to make it simple as it’s possible to avoid the issues about physical and cognitive abilities change with age.

Understanding the Challenge

These aren’t just apps for ‘older people’

The traditional perception of being ‘old’ simply isn’t the same anymore as living longer has opened the doors to enjoy many more of life’s benefits over time.  

In June 2019 I was visiting my parents by taking 10 hours train to Nongkhai, my hometown, there was a group of seniors that seemed like they were all friends. I sat next to them for an extended period of time to hear what they were talking about or what they were doing- all of them were using smartphones in their time spent on the train. One of them (almost 70 years old) showing her pal that her daughter sent her the news about the bus crashing with many passengers had been hurt. Then they start talking about so many things relating to how lucky they are to take the train as well as the weather… It’s rainy season so it’s more of of a risk to take the bus or any other form of ground transportation during this time. It would be nice if they had the tool to help them feel safe and enjoy spending their life with friends and family.

Seven key things that have to consider to ensure smartphone technology is accessible to older users:

Vision And Hearing

    • Avoid font sizes smaller than 16 pixels (depending of course on the device, viewing distance, line height, etc.).
    • Let people adjust text size themselves.

Motor Control

    • Reduce the distance between interface elements that are likely to be used in sequence (such as form fields), but make sure they’re at least 2 millimeters apart.
    • Buttons on touch interfaces should be at least 9.6 millimeters diagonally (for example, 44 × 44 pixels on an iPad) for ages up to 70, and larger for older people.

Device Use

    • Avoid small-screen devices (i.e. phones).
    • Don’t rely on SMS to convey important information.

Relationships

    • Older people have different relationships than young people, at least partly because they’ve had more time to cultivate them. For example, we conducted some research into how older people interact with healthcare professionals. In many cases, they’ve seen the same doctors for decades, leading to a very high degree of trust.
My design process

To explain and communicate gaps in my process. I decided to follow IDEO’s Human-Centered Design and Lean UX Design Thinking process to make sure that my design decisions were supported by user research and feedback.

User Persona

I analyze user behavior base on the target audience in ages 50 – 80 years old in different education and lifestyle. I selected  2 user personas using interview methods to collect data.

User Scenarios

I am using user scenarios to keep the user always in the center of the design and development process and to outlines the path that a typical user will go through to complete her goal.

 

Personas without scenarios are like characters with no plot. — Kim Goodwin

 

Ideating the Solution

This was the first step to help me outline the app and visually imagine it.

Then it was time to start sketching. I came up with several potential solutions to each of the pain points and made some rough UI sketches.

 

Visual Research

Inspiration Board

Before getting started with the visual design I create an inspiration board in Milanote. The purpose was to learn about the visual world and to keep in mind to focus on the visual design that suits elderly people and gathering inspiration from other weather application.

 

Final Design

Since this is the app design focusing on elderly people, One of the most important things is to make UI-Reader friendly, I have test with the real users to make sure if it’s friendly enough, the font is big enough for the bad eyesight, the buttons on touch interfaces is enough to click and tried to cover all the things. Some of the users still feel like it’s difficult to read even I put the font size started with 16 pixels, So I go back to the design prototype and put the feature that the user can adjust font size easily, problem fixed!

 

 

Conclusion

What I have learned

The outcome of the weather application for elderly people is could be simple design but the challenging is in terms of things to concern about elderly people, “These aren’t just ‘apps for older people” My goal is to make it to suit the life benefit for them, it’s something to fulfill their life. And I have achieved what I tend to.  

It’s challenging to make sure you understand the people who are meant to use your product and come up with the way to solve the problem, always stick with the design thinking along the way is very important to not lose sight of their real problem and to check if we are on the right track, specially when we get lost, not sure if this is really what we are trying to fix, go back to the conclusion and remind myself why I’m doing this, what is the pain point so that I can find a way to fix, the sooner we know the faster to achieve the goal.