BUSY BUS APP

Busy Bus was designed to make it easy to track a bus on a route and plan to arrive to the bus stop in time to catch the bus in a busy metropolitan area. Using GPS, the app would be able to determine the time it would take a bus to arrive at a stop and the time needed to get to the bus stop from the user’s location.

Team Members: Jen Allen

My Role: Project Manager | UX Research | UI Design | Usability Testing 

THE PROBLEM

Transit officials have identified a problem that they want to solve. Due to expansion, numerous bus routes have been recently added. Many of those routes stop at the same bus stop. Riders want to know when the next bus will arrive at each stop. They also want to know how much time they have to get to the bus stop. Previously, riders were able to run to the bus stop and catch their bus but have now had trouble determining which bus they are catching since multiple routes are at one stop.

 

THE SOLUTION

Using UX Research to determine how a user looks up their bus route, display options, and iconography, Busy Bus was designed to meet those needs. With the app, you can look at buses in a specific area or location you are currently at. It will provide real-time updates of bus tracking as well as the time needed (in walking) to get to the bus stop. In addition, you can add routes and places of interest to your favorites section for easy access. An explore feature was also added as user survey and interviews informed the design of additional functions.

 

Discovery Phase

UX Research

User Survey & Interview | User Persona & Empathy Map | Journey Map

Methods:
Competitor Review – See what others are doing and how successful an integration with timeline for bus arrivals is doing. User Interviews – Create Survey for potential users to take online

Recruitment Plan:
Find friends and co-students that utilize mass transit to participate in the survey
Find competitors that have created similar apps and evaluate how they solved the solution

Timeline:
1 week

Resource Needs:
Willing participants, surveymonkey or google sheets, other case study or documentation from competitors.
Time to research and digest information from other sources

User Survey & Interview

To help inform my perspective, I sent out a user surveys via google forms to colleagues, friends, and other members of the Thinkful programs to find users that used mass transit and could provide insight in the this process. Some of the questions involved the frequency of using apps, websites, printed schedules, or other means to look up the schedule of bus routes for a bus stop. In addition, I did follow up interviews with some of the users to determine the specific journey they take in finding a bus schedule. This helped inform the demographics, user persona, empathy map, and journey map.

User Persona & Empathy Map

To help inform my perspective, I sent out a user surveys via google forms to colleagues, friends, and other members of the Thinkful programs to find users that used mass transit and could provide insight in the this process. Some of the questions involved the frequency of using apps, websites, printed schedules, or other means to look up the schedule of bus routes for a bus stop. In addition, I did follow up interviews with some of the users to determine the specific journey they take in finding a bus schedule. This helped inform the demographics, user persona, empathy map, and journey map.

Journey Map

Information Architecture

User Flow:
Beginning to understand what would be needed for the app, I created a user flow to provide all possibile options for a user to experience when searching for a new bus, saving a bus, looking up favorites, and even account actions such as logging in and signing out.

Sitemap:
After revision of how the user would utilize the app to find information, I created a sitemap for guidance in the next section – wireframes.

Sketching:
Bringing paper to pencil, I created some rough sketches of how the wireframe would look based off the user flow and sitemap.

User Flow

Sitemap

Visual Design & Branding Phase

Sketches

Color Pallet & Logo Design

Style Guide 

Wireframes

High Fidelity Mockup

Usability Testing Phase

Testing & Feedback

Usability Testing:
Testing was conducted by zoom interview and sessions on Thinkful’s platform of videoconferencing. Tested with 3 users to interact and use the high fidelity prototype and report live time their experience and feedback on the process of finding a bus, saving a favorite, searching in the explore section, and visual design feedback.

Iterations:
After usability testing was conducted, new iterations were made to make icons more prominent to the user, standards in spacing and margins, along with text and icon alignment that was not apparent on the hierarchy in the first iteration. Below are a few examples of what was changed.

What I learned

With a lot of information to display, it is important to determine what is the most pertinent information to display to the user. Also, as I do not ride mass transit, it informed me of the process of finding a bus can be confusing and difficult. Many users that I interviewed expressed desire for additional features to be added to their current app in use.

 

The biggest finding was creating enough space in the layout for map placement and icon placement within the map. In another iteration, I would like to provide color coded routes along with a pop out of quick display information for the user to view instead of opening in another screen.

 

Overall, Busy Bus helped the user determine which bus was arriving at the bus stop and the time needed to get to the bus stop.  The overall feedback on the color scheme was well received in the design as well as the logo design.

See the prototype here