Amimovil (2008)

Looking to promote mobile data usage, Movistar entrusted Telefónica I+D to develop a simple web service that would allow users to transition easily between desktop and mobile web browsing.

What

Movistar (leading mobile operator in Spain, part of Telefónica) was looking for ways to increase mobile data usage, and ease of transition in desktop-to-mobile web browsing was deemed as fundamental.

Movistar came to Telefónica I+D (R&D) with just a simple idea; a service that would allow users sending the URL of a webpage to their mobile phones. Movistar gave us a lot of freedom in defining the details of this service.

side by side captures of Amimovil service working on a newspaper site
Amimovil would allow users sending the URL of the page they were browsing on their PC to their mobile phone by SMS (mock-up created by Sergi Vila)

Our main principle for the service was simplicity. The service completed an easy task, so it should complete it efficiently and painlessly.

We went from the idea to a scenario, where we documented the interaction between a user and the service in real life, extracting guidelines for the implementation from it.

After selecting the main tasks, annotated wireframes (mostly hand-drawn, with some electronic ones for particularly critical pages) defining them were created and shared with Visual Design and Development teams, so they could proceed in parallel. While Development was building the functionalities, Visual Design translated wireframes to pixel-perfect mock-ups so that Development could pick required graphic assets afterwards.

When a first prototype was created, some guerrilla usability tests were conducted to get feedback about the service. Proposed changes were shared in the form of annotated screen captures, and soon the final implementation was ready.

The result was a simple to use service, where customer could sign up and start using the service in mere seconds.

My work

Assisted project management, making sure project kept flowing and team stayed connected.

Created simple text scenarios for the main tasks based on the starting idea.

Text describing interaction between a user called 'Manuel' and Amimovil service during signup
Scenarios were created for main tasks, and new questions and opportunities arose from them
Defined flows for the main tasks based on the scenarios, illustrating requirements with hand-drawn annotated wireframes.
Hand-drawn diagram showing main user flow in Amimovil service
Hand-drawn flows were created for the main use scenario
Hand-drawn diagram showing signup flow in Amimovil service
Sign-up process was also particularly studied

Some screens in the flow required extra detail, so I created wireframes for them. These that were considered critical were turned into electronic documents (with Balsamiq), so that changes would be easier to add and maintain.

Heavily annotated hand-drawn wireframe for Amimovil homepage
Some pages were wireframed independently, like the homepage
Electronic wireframe of Amimovil homepage, with several notes
Pages that were prone to changes were turned digital with Balsamiq

Kept close communication with Visual Design and Development teams to minimise documentation and optimise implementation.

Mock-up of Amimovil homepage including visual design assets
Photoshop mock-up of Amimovil’s homepage (created by Sergi Vila)
HTML/CSS prototype of Amimovil homepage
Development team created a first prototype for Amimovil, ready to be tested and refined

Conducted usability tests on the prototype, analysed the results, and created a list of needed modifications. These modifications were distributed as annotated screen captures.

Screen capture of Amimovil dialog, with hand-drawn annotations
Modifications were circulated among project team members with annotated screen captures

What I got

  • Lots of freedom in defining the details of the service had me evaluating and selecting the best tools and activities for the job.
  • Responsibility, including a stake in project-managing.
  • End-to-end experience in service design, from turning a general idea into a concrete solution and then testing and refining it.

Important achievements

Even though Amimovil never took off commercially, Project Management was impressed with my performance. I was called as a consultant in several other projects involving Movistar as a result.