When creating Discovery's suite of TV-Everywhere GO Apps, the Discovery Digital team had the viewer in mind. In the hopes of constantly bettering the user experience, the Discovery Digital team took the first step in building a customer tailored experience with Investigation Discovery GO. Looking at the viewing trends of the typical ID viewer, Discovery Digital wanted to build an experience that was customizable for the ID viewer by breaking out of the one size fits all user experience. The typical ID addict is more interested in the crime genre itself than any specific show, so the digital teams goal was to create a custom user experience that allowed the viewers to get into the viewing experience as quickly as possible and start watching the content they love.
The strategy for the new ID GO user experience started with the ID viewer. The digital team held cross-functional design studios aimed at encouraging creative solutions to common user complaints. Then, they took a data-drive approach, analyzing how ID app users navigated the current app and catered the new user experience to make it easier than ever to binge on true crime content – including an auto-play video experience, improved personalized recommendations for content, and the ability to start a series from the beginning or watch the latest episode with one selection. Based on these insights, a simple prototype was created in order to get immediate customer feedback. The team took that consumer input and continued to improve the initial design, testing new features with a group of ID users in order to evaluate their success.
The actual interface was created around the paradigm of limited time. The ID addict wants their content as fast and easy as possible, so the new user experience only features three main screens: a home page that auto animates, a video player that can be quickly navigated without leaving the show and then a simple search/browse screen that is highly personalized based on the consumers viewing habits. This search/browse screen also has the capability to auto play. When simplifying the design, the digital team also had in mind the different devices ID GO is used on and created the new user experience to work on any of those devices.
Another important feature of the ID GO user experience is its ability to update and evolve. Since Discovery owns the app, we are able to a/b test new user experiences daily and we are able to make quick changes avoiding app store submissions that can take days to turn around. This ability to update and evolve lends itself to bringing a custom user experience to all our networks TV Everywhere GO apps. Using a client application framework allows the digital team to quickly and cost-effectively create custom user experiences using domain methodologies. When incorporating this technology into other network apps in the future, Discovery can utilize 80% of the what is used for the ID user experience and customize the rest for each network, making the experience unique. This functionality is thanks to a focus on atomic design, which allows us to break down the apps design into its smallest parts so we can easily recreate it in other places.
The finished app is a product of consistent communication with our consumers in order to create the best viewing experience for their specific needs. The ID GO user experience update was the first step into producing a custom experience for all of Discovery's GO apps. Early results on the ID GO update showed an increase in authentication and streams of ID's content, with week over week improvements continuing since launch in early December. By the end of 2Q19, the new ID GO user experience will be incorporated on all device platforms. Looking forward, as Discovery's Digital footprint continues to evolve and expand, this updated, custom user experience will be able to transition to other Discovery Networks TVE GO apps.
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