Imagine that your smartphone could proactively guide you through a busy day, like an intelligent personal assistant in a sci-fi movie. Such a system would need a very well considered user experience, as well as a model of secure data capture where an immense amount of personal information could be used privately to generate predictive insights for users — all without ever leaving the device.
Humanistic was approached by a large smartphone manufacturer to solve an app integration problem in their OS, and ended up proposing a new vision for how a modern mobile operating system could work. Our work helped inform approaches to interaction design, user experience, data collection and on-device computation for future market-ready versions of their popular mobile OS.
To get there, our designers led a number of workshops to uncover and separate what was actually possible versus science fiction, enumerate the array of different sensor or data inputs which could be fused to make assumptions about a user’s context, and discover opportunities for where we could push the envelope with local on-device processing. Armed with these insights, various models of human behaviour, our team began to piece together a vision for how a mobile OS could automate a person’s life while keeping the human in the loop and in control.
The final output of the project and the prototype was a huge success. So much so that aspects of the project have been integrated into subsequent generations of their mobile OS as banner features — part of a long-term strategy to help users offload some of the finicky interactions that have plagued mobile computing.