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There are about 129,864,880 unique books in the world. There are also about 1,500,000 different podcasts, with over 34 million episodes. This is a lot of content. So how do people even choose what to consume? And what are they missing?

The Team

Dylan Eldridge, UI Designer

Lara Teile, UI Designer

My Role

Lead design thinking and ideation, user interviewing, create style tiles, high-fidelity wireframes, prototypes, and design kit.


As COVID-19 hit and the US was put on lockdown orders, we drastically increased consumption of books, music, podcasts, and more media to keep us busy while at home. But with the millions of options, how can people get recommendations that they trust are tailor-made for them so they don't spend more time searching than they do enjoying?

Process & Findings

We conducted preliminary exploratory research and competitive analysis to understand what already existed in the book/podcast mobile app space. We also looked to indirect competitors such as Stitchfix for how a service can curate personalized items for people. 

Screen Shot 2020-11-19 at 12.41.37

Since we are building a new brand as well as a new product, we spent time identifying some design principles that would help guide us as we designed the application: 

During our exploratory user interviews, we tried to understand how our users interact with media and what they use it for. Since 100% of our users shared that they read or listen as a way to wind down & relax or as a way to learn, we explored different styles and names to determine what would best fit this service.

  1. Instill and maintain trust.
    Do what we say we will, consistently. Allow users to trust us and our recommendations.

  2. Be concise; less is more.
    Eliminate overwhelm; be as minimal as possible in function, content, and design. 

  3. Be human and approachable.
    We are not just an algorithm. Be personal, be human.


Since our users mostly looked for something relaxing out of our application, we decided to create our first round of wireframes for testing with a calming, pastel palette.


From these user tests, we found several insights to guide our high-fidelity prototype.


–  Allowing an unlimited number of options is what causes overwhelm, so keep the screens and process simple.  

– It would be helpful to keep the curation process separate between books and podcasts

– Some of the options in the curation quiz need to be clarified. 

We responded to this feedback​ by making several changes, including:

• Streamlining the favorite book/podcast selection process.

• Separate each question during onboarding by the type of media.

• Include labeling and clearer imagery so answer options are obvious.

After finalizing our high-fidelity designs and conducting usability testing with our users, we completed our final prototype and wrapped up our complete design package. With more time, We would have focused on cleaning up the design and modernizing it, opting for a cleaner, simpler design with light pops of color. We also would have played with the look and feel of the curation quiz, opting for fewer conflicting images and keeping it as simple as possible. 

Finally, we put together our design kit for any teams coming back to work on the app in the future. As this was a student project, I would now opt for a cleaner palette & more consistent iconography and images used.

We W

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