Skype Memories

Collect moments and share memories with friends

Skype Memories

Collect moments and share memories with friends

Skype Memories

Collect moments and share memories with friends

skype_memories1

BRIEF  Introduce and invent new forms of async communication based on user research for Skype instant messaging app

PROJECT INFO  Umeå Institute of Design, 2015, 10 weeks

TEAM  Isabel Andersson, Matthias Karg

COLLABORATION  Skype London - Steve “Buzz” Pierce, Swedish ICT Interactive Institute - Brendon Clark, Hyper Island - Nico Nuzzaci

SKILLS  Group work/ Organizing, conducting and synthesizing ethnographic research, ideation, concept sketching, video prototyping, flow charts 

Individual/ Wireframes, narrative, storyboarding, film shooting and editing

BRIEF  Introduce and invent new forms of async communication based on user research for Skype instant messaging app

PROJECT INFO  Umeå Institute of Design, 2015, 10 weeks

TEAM  Isabel Andersson, Matthias Karg

COLLABORATION  Skype London - Steve “Buzz” Pierce, Swedish ICT Interactive Institute - Brendon Clark, Hyper Island - Nico Nuzzaci

What if we could keep memories from moments spent together on Skype that would stay with us, even after the call?

What if we could keep memories from moments spent together on Skype that would stay with us, even after the call?

What if we could keep memories from moments spent together on Skype that would stay with us, even after the call?

What if we could keep memories from moments spent together on Skype that would stay with us, even after the call?

CONCEPT

Ethnographic research

A Skype video-call creates a feeling of togetherness between people but as soon as people hang up, people feel far away again. Memories is a feature within Skype that helps collect moments during video-calls with close friends and family. It enables people to collect, live again and share memories spent on Skype. These memories then serve as inspiration to engage in future conversations.

A Skype video-call creates a feeling of togetherness between people but as soon as people hang up, people feel far away again.

Memories is a feature within Skype that helps collect moments during video-calls with close friends and family.

It enables people to collect, live again and share memories spent on Skype. These memories then serve as inspiration to engage in future conversations.

CONCEPT VIDEO

Ethnographic research

HOW IT WORKS

Ethnographic research

ACTIVATE MEMORIES FEATURE ON SKYPE

Within Skype Memories settings, activate manual collection or automated collection of moments during the call. In Manual collection mode, you can collect a moment by pressing on Memories button on the screen options. If you want to collect memories in Automated mode, you can select numbers of memories to collect, define triggers to collect highlights of the conversation such as smiling, laughing and changes on screen.

Memories1

COLLECT A MOMENT DURING THE CALL

Skype call creates a strong link between people living apart. Memories captures your moments spent together. In Automated or Manual collection mode, memories are collected in short videos of less than 10 seconds. While using Manual mode, few seconds are collected before clicking the collection button to fully capture your moment.

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SET PROFILE PICTURE OF MOMENTS SPENT TOGETHER

Set profile picture as reminder of moments spent together

During the call several memories are collected and are displayed at the end of the call. Amongst memories collected, one memory will be set as new profile picture animation of the person you were speaking to. Within Skype, all your contacts have completely individual and different profile animations linked to your own personal memories of the call.

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RELIVE AND SHARE MEMORIES

Collected memories can be accessed by a tap on any profile animations of your contact. Memories are displayed in a timeline to actively browse memories. By holding a tap on one memory, the moment can be lived again and shared with the other person. Memories can also be deleted in the timeline.

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ETHNOGRAPHIC RESEARCH

Ethnographic research

We started by looking for a local context that brings people together. We learned about a seed-swap event occurring in Umeå and planned our ethnographic research before going to the event by contacting organizers and by preparing interviews.

We participated in the event’s activities and brought our own seeds to exchange with people. We interviewed several participants by using a journey-mapping method to immediately map out information talked about during the interview.

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We were strongly inspired by one of our interviewees and did a follow-up interview where we asked her to tell stories about plants in her home. We used contextual mapping and cultural probes to collect her rich stories.

Helen told us about a plant she received from her mother who passed away. Since then, she cuts parts of this plant and give them to her friends so they can grow their own version of the plant. It is a way for her to carry her mother’s memory and to keep in touch with her friends by talking about their plants.

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One strong insight we gathered from our research is that people feel connected if they have something in common such as hobbies or memories. Participants saw the plants and seeds as a currency for social exchange to get into contact with other people.

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RESEARCH PRESENTATION

Ethnographic research

As a research deliverable, we engaged our client and audience in our research context. We recreated the seed-swap event by introducing our interviewees and by displaying their stories with engaging probes. Our goal was to present our research insights and to trigger conversation with the audience.

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RAPID PROTOTYPING & TESTING

Ethnographic research

Ideation was carried out through brainstorming session and activities such as ideating through personalities and our interviewees stories. Based on our research insights, we sketched our ideas on paper in use scenarios and started prototyping.

We created cheap, quick and understandable physical prototypes to test and validate ideas with people.

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With our prototypes, we were investigating ways for Skype to bring people together, whether because they have shared the same event or because they have the same interest. We were aiming to provide an experience in which people can build on each other's content and create something together.

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Each prototype was then communicated to our client through short videos showing time-based interactions.

Souvenir

SOUVENIR  Share memories from an event with friends by asking for a video, photo, music connected to the event. Each participant links a digital memory. After a certain amount of time, participants reveal together the memory.

Liveposter

LIVE POSTER  Engage with people interested in your local event and to ask community for help. If enough people sign up for the event, it will occur. Live Poster connects people together over the same interest.

Spaces

SPACES  Interact with friends through collages on the space's wall with pictures, videos, gifs, writing by hand... Participants can merge and alter content and keep the conversation going in a fun way.

CONCEPT FRAMING

Ethnographic research

Skype-calls enable a feeling of togetherness but… the only memory left after a video call is that it ended.

Which memories could be left from a Skype-call after the call ended? And how could memories trigger new conversations on Skype?

We envisioned that people could keep valuable moments from their Skype-calls. They could share, relive memories, and trigger new conversations with them.

USER TESTING

Ethnographic research

We designed Memories as a feature within Skype app on smartphone. We prototyped the app by wireframing and testing our low-fi paper prototypes with user. We organized interview sessions supported by a probe to collect people’s thoughts about collecting memories on Skype. 

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WIREFRAMES & PROTOTYPE

Ethnographic research

We moved towards digitally prototyping our feature within the app by using Skype’s existing design language. Memories feature is seen as a capturing tool enhancing the existing Skype experience.

We moved towards digitally prototyping our feature within the app by using Skype’s existing design language. Memories feature is seen as a capturing tool enhancing the existing Skype experience.

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Skype_Making2

STORYTELLING

Ethnographic research

Writing a narrative played an important part in communicating our concept to Skype. We focused on conveying the value of Skype Memories in an emotional story that people could personally connect to. We also put special care in showcasing the feature of the app by using a video recording of our digital prototype.

Writing a narrative played an important part in communicating our concept to Skype. We focused on conveying the value of Skype Memories in an emotional story that people could personally connect to. We also put special care in showcasing the feature of the app by using a video recording of our digital prototype.

Skype-narrative

ROLE & REFLECTION

Ethnographic research

As students, we took the liberty to pick a context not directly connected to our brief in the sense that a seed swap event is not related to digital experiences provided by Skype. Yet, we were deeply curious about people exchanging seeds and looking at the human meaning of why and how people connect to each other. We had the opportunity to organize our own research field and it was valuable to learn how to organize ourselves and connect with people of interest.

We took this project as a space to experiment alternative ways of presenting and of prototyping. During ideation, we lost sight and focus on our project because we did not frame our project early enough. We overcame this crisis by connecting back to our research and to our client’s values.

Our group process was democratic. We made sure everyone could get a chance to learn and practice research, ideation, prototyping and testing methods. We divided our work after knowing what we were designing for our final concept. I took a personal interest in communicating our story and our design to the client by focusing on our narrative and on film editing and shooting.

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