Music is a prominent part of many people’s lives. That being said, many encounter challenges when listening to music including not being able to easily listen to music with others remotely, having different music tastes as friends, and struggling to discover new sounds. Apollo is a music discovery and listening platform which alleviates these struggles for users by stimulating a familiar, personalized, and collaborative experience.
Music listening brings people together and helps stimulate a social environment. While group music listening typically occurs in person, users struggle to find ways to listen together when they are apart. Furthermore users encounter many problems when listening the music with their friends regardless of location; this includes not having similar music tastes or not knowing lyrics to a song.
Apollo is a music discovery and listening app that syncs to users’ Spotify or Apple Music accounts. The product creates a space for users to discover new music and artists, generate discourse, join music streams, learn lyrics and share their music tastes with others. With Apollo, users’ are greeted with a familiar, personalized, and collaborative experience that accommodates their needs.
Before heading into this project, I asked myself some questions to set up goals for the process.
To launch the research phase of my process, I began with a benchmark analysis to gain a better understanding of existing music listening platforms and to see if a collaborative music listening platform already exists. From my findings, I discovered that there were a couple existing music streaming platforms however they had a lot of pain points such as poor UI, the inability to collaborate on streams and no privacy settings.
Next, I conducted user interviews to gain a better perspective of what my target users valued, what they struggled with and what they hoped for in the future. I interviewed twelve participants with six questions relating to their music habits and challenges. From this study, I realized habits and struggles that were common amongst participants. Here is a summary of my findings:
I then consolidated my research findings from the benchmark analysis and my user research to create an affinity map that allowed me to gain key insights about what users value. After grouping all of my findings, there were four main themes that were clear: communication/ collaboration, familiarity, accommodation, and personalization.
After my research and ideation work, I began my prototyping phase by organizing the information architecture of the product. This was altered all throughout the prototyping phase as I realized I needed more features than I initially thought.
Apollo was a passion project that I worked on throughout my free time throughout the past two months. It was definitely a challenge as I had to work on it by myself from start to finish. That being said, I’m glad I challenged myself because I was able to learn new softwares like sketch and Invision, and also taught myself new research steps like affinity mapping. I really enjoyed affinity mapping as a part of my design process as it helped me narrow down key insights from my research. These insights helped lead my ideation process. Next steps for this project include developing a fully functional prototype, and conducting usability testing to make revised changes. I also would like to design a tablet and desktop version of the product.