Cozmo App Overhaul
How might we help users discover all of Cozmo’s capabilities through the mobile app?
This is Cozmo.
autonomously amuse himself
play games adversarially against human users
embolden children to code using Scratch.
His “brains” and computing power live on his accompanying mobile app.
I was responsible for all user experience design efforts on the Cozmo app from June 2018 to the company’s closure in May 2019.
The need for an app overhaul arose from users raving about Cozmo’s personality but not fully engaging with most of the app’s features. At the same time they often stated that:
After we shipped the app redesign, analytics from the 2018 holiday season product usage showed that:
Our Amazon product rating increased across all markets. Ratings in Germany, our weakest market, grew from 3.1 to 4.0 out of 5 stars.
Public product ratings, which is a key driver of sales, may not strongly correlate with retention; we had assumed that higher engagement equaled higher product satisfaction and ratings, but excellent first impressions and the quality of interactions drove higher ratings even as retention levels remained stable.
The Cozmo product line was 7-figures profitable before company shutdown.
Below is documentation of parts of the design process for the Cozmo app overhaul.
Tools and methods I used were:
longitudinal observational study
app usage analytics
user survey responses
I delivered a full-color clickable prototype using Sketch and Flinto to the engineering team.
Tools & Methods
Site Map Restructuring
Challenges with the original architecture of the app:
There were only 4 main buttons on the home screen, so users often felt that there was little content.
2 of the main buttons asked users to “Tune Up” or “Feed” the robot, features that were associated with user churn.
Our most engaging features, “Explorer Mode”, “CodeLab”, and “Cozmo Says”, were nested under a vague title of “Discover”
Revisions made to the architecture:
We surfaced the most popular features to top-level of the app and split out “Games” and “Tricks” for clarity.
We relegated “Tune Up” and “Feed” to progress bars at the top of the home screen to preserve the functionality but take up less real estate and attention onscreen.
We displayed all of the content in a digestible way by creating a carousel filled with a card for each feature, showing a maximum of 3 cards onscreen a time.
Initial Home Screen Explorations
Design decisions based on research and user-testing:
The carousel design pattern was very successful for displaying a large amount of content in a digestible way and commonly seen in children’s apps
Major category names should be accompanied by clear illustrations for children who cannot yet read.
Kids are very comfortable with scrolling and could find all of the content
Kids felt that there were “so many things to do with Cozmo”
Kids are extremely literal and don’t think very abstractly, so we chose extremely clear yet exciting images and titles
Kids rarely (or sometimes can’t) read, so when onboarding them to certain ideas or features, so we taught them through animations and images instead of text
Alternatively, below is an app-walk through of the features that were changed in the app overhaul.