Unsure about how to design for voice? Fear not, our Design Director Taco has put together an excellent thought piece on the ins and outs of how to create successful voice skills.

Mix in an overview of Google’s latest keynote, along with case studies of excellent uses of AR and Behavioural Science to drive app conversions, and this email becomes the perfect prep for the weekend.

Hi Mum! Said Dad

Allow for more than just linearity when designing for voice

What to think about when designing for voice

“One of the potentially life-changing features voice interfaces have is that they, while not entirely distraction-free, are certainly a lot less invasive than traditional close-proximity UIs.”

This week, we take a look at how voice user interfaces might change your day-to-day and what to look out for when designing them. Check out the article on our Medium page.

By Taco den Outer, Design Director

Google are developing a personal assistant that can make calls for you.

This Tuesday, Google held their annual I/O keynote and we are still struggling to pick our jaws off the floor. The overarching theme of the day was Artificial Intelligence and the way it can be used to help smartphone users in their everyday life.

With the latest Android P, your smartphone will use Machine Learning to predict things like which apps you will use next and what brightness is suitable for your exact needs in order to conserve battery power. The Gmail AI will in the future complete your sentences for you (just like your cute grandparents…), saving you precious seconds. Google News will give you the headlines from across the world, curated by AI — giving users the full picture of a story and hopefully combating “fake news”. The Google Photos AI has now become so powerful that it will automatically turn documents you’ve photographed into PDF and even colorise old black and white photos.

However, the real show-stopper was the announcement of Google Duplex — a feature that will turn the Google Assistant into an actual personal assistant that can make phone calls for you.

Google are taking the smartphone from a handheld computer to something that computers never were — an assistant that knows you just as well as (if not better than) a human assistant would.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, and we will be providing you with a more in-depth analysis of some of the features presented at I/O next week.

By Jeevan Jayaprakash, Strategist

Some of the barriers that need to be overcome for users to convert to an in-app subscription scheme. Image Source: Google Play

Using Behavioural Science to increase conversion rate of in-app subscriptions

Subscription services have become a mainstay in consumer purchasing behaviour — 9 out of 10 UK consumers receive goods and services via subscriptions. But if you have an app, getting users to commit to subscribing to your specific scheme can be difficult.

Nudge Theory (which won Richard Thaler the Nobel Prize in Economics last year) offers a solution: users need to be guided or “nudged” towards conversion. Here are some examples how this can be done:

  1. Creating a sense of urgency: bringing longer-term goals and intentions into the present, e.g. by introducing limited time offers.
  2. Using reciprocity: users are likely to respond to a positive action, e.g. being given a free sample, with a positive reaction, i.e converting to your subscription scheme.
  3. Social Norms: Telling the users about other, similar users that are subscribed to the scheme can be a strong nudge towards conversion.

The power of using Behavioural Science when it comes to in-app subscriptions is further explored this article by Google Play, which offers some interesting case studies.

By Oliver Iyer, Strategist

Image source: Teen Vogue

Zara are taking advantage of Apple’s new ARkit to drive in-store conversions

I have been closely following the rise of digital in the fashion industry, and will be providing you with a longer piece on it next week. For now, I’d like to show you a great example of how fashion retail is becoming increasingly omnichannel. Consumers are still shopping in brick and mortar stores, but they are doing so with their smartphone in their hands. According to Google, mobile searches for “near me” have grown over 3X in the past two years, and almost 80% of shoppers will go in store when they have an item they want immediately. Zara found a way to leverage this behaviour, by using Apple’s newly released ARkit.

Walking into Zara’s flagship store in Rome a few weeks ago, I was met with a large, empty pedestal with a QR code on the front of it. Using my native iOS camera app, I scanned the code (yes you can use your native camera app to scan QR codes in iOS now) and was taken directly to the Zara app listing. After downloading the app (thank you EU roaming laws), I fired up the AR experience and got to witness 6 foot tall models moving and posing on the pedestal. With the click of a button, I could order their looks online, or buy it in-store.

The above is a great example of how retailers are using digital to make the in-store shopping experience more seamless and engaging. You can imagine how the shop windows of the future would only have AR models strutting to and fro, whose looks could be purchased simply by pointing your camera at them.

By Oliver Iyer, Strategist

Originally written as part of Hi Mum! Said Dad’s weekly newsletter, H! Lites.

H! Lites hits you with a short, sharp, weekly dose of the latest and greatest across tech, business, design and other contemporary issues that we think would be of value to our readers.

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