Over the course of 3 months I lead a team of 3 focused on changing how Type 1 diabetes is experienced. Since no one in the team has Type 1, through the course of this project we established strong relationships with the community to ensure that we effectively understood the problem space and created solutions that stand as a landmark of what health tech should be.
Team lead, Research, Prototyping, Visual Design & UX
By: Taha Hossain, Carter Pang, Tobias Bölkow
Using: Sketch, InVision Studio, Maya, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects
From the very beginning to the end, this project was designed with a close feedback loop with the Type 1 community. What started initially as coffee chats turned into a long conversations on their daily frustrations. We were incredibly grateful to receive the opportunity to work so closely with our users to make something they truly loved.
Whether it is to better understand the people we are designing for or just learning more about Type 1 – every bit of research was done with intention. We've committed early on to never do research in a silo and took full advantage of the relationships established early on to also conduct primary research.
Although diabetes is related to how people physically feel, we learned that the products they use to manage their diabetes have a significant influence on their emotional wellbeing as well.
This meant that focusing on just usability and functionality is not enough. What is the balance between keeping the user informed vs. intruding their personal mental space? How do our users feel using our product? Since so much of how they feel daily is determined by the product – it should act less as a third party and more as an extension of themselves.
A disparate system that fails to consider emotional wellbeing as much as the physical.
A cohesive ecosystem focused on reducing noise and alleviating anxiety.
No way of sharing data temporarily
Athletes mentioned that they would like to share their Blood Sugar with a third party (such as their coach), but only for a limited time.
The current experience failed to present important information to the user without inflicting a negative emotional response.
Outdated Form Factor
We discovered that children were self conscious of using the devices and were reluctant to administering their Insulin around their peers.
Users have to coordinate with two different devices (a CGM and an Insulin Pump) to administer their Insulin — making it difficult to coordinate.
Users have to keep track of important information so the experience should never be distracting.
Users are diverse and have a wide range of technical abilities that vary.
Users will be used to the current structure and switching to another platform should not be overwhelming.
Our overarching goal was to identify any gaps in our knowledge, overlooked issues and friction points with the decisions made so far. The DECIDE framework helped us prepare and guide our sessions.
Adjusted the copy to sound less "medical" and formal to being more human.
Added microcopy that explained why needed certain information and how bolus was calculated.
Adjusted information architecture to highlight what's most important.
The Gluco app syncs with the physical ecosystem to allow users to check in on their blood sugar, administer insulin and share their status with others.
Gluco informs the users without causing stress and anxiety by focusing on the information that matters most to them.
Fine control over history log
Highlights what's most important first
A simple and informative flow allows the user to calculate amount of Insulin needed. The user is then able to administer it into their body through the pump.
Calculates amount of Insulin needed
Notifies the user when to eat
A feature users really wanted, especially athletes, was being able to share data for a limited time with someone else. Users still have the option to share their data without a time limit.
Invite anyone to check in on the user
Limit when they can view user's data
Through this project we’ve realized that as designers of the product we are always at least a little bit biased towards ourselves. We worked hard to establish a meaningful relationship early on with our users and – although not perfect – this project provided insight into the value of what we do and the importance of making sure that we never lose sight of the meaning behind our work.