keyper

more control.

Project by Allie Langohr and Nicholas Cross
Challenge

Keyper is a home management system app designed to give the user maximum control over their home from anywhere they go.

Keyper addresses security concerns and connects with the home's utilities so that users feel comfortable and content with the status of their homes while they are away. Keyper helps bridge the gap between smartphones and smarthomes.

Our biggest challenge with this app was to keep the design simple and easy to navigate while ensuring users have maximum control over their homes. Keyper features the ability to control one's electronics, utilities, security, and to set reminders for tasks like taking out the garbage or picking up a new light bulb on the way home from work.

Research and Wireframes

To research which functions would be best suited for the Keyper app, we started by looking at what similar apps on the market accomplish. We read reviews and talked with users in order to determine the pros and cons of some of the other big home management systems.

Apps like Nest, Honeywell and Ecobee focused mostly on managing utilities and ignored the security aspects of managing one's home. Honeywell does consider security and allows users to adjust temperature and air quality while they are away, but its design mirrors those of digital thermostats too heavily, which undermines their wide focus.

Our solution involved building an app around balancing the utility management and reminders, temperature and appliance control, as well as security features. We wanted the app to have a large variety of functions without making it feel overcrowded or overwhelming.

Medium Fidelity

We wanted to keep the look and feel of a regular thermostat involved in the design of Keyper so that using the app would feel more intuitive. We tried to incorporate that feel across the board.

Our initial design featured a bright status and navigation bars against a dark background. We also used a transparents hamburger menu that could be hidden away.

Prototype

Usability testing allowed us to improve the UI/UX of the design. After giving a user six different tasks to complete upon their first time seeing the app, we learned that some of the features were uninviting, and other features were difficult to locate.

In our final design we moved the menu into a tab menu so that they were more easily accessible, and because there were only five items involved. We kept the circular thermostat design across the app, but we changed the usage graph to look more like an actual graph so that the information it provides is more easily understood.

We also elminated the light and dark contrast between the status and navigation bars and the body of the app so that it has a more unified, modern look and feel.