Through our analytics, we found that we had more users trying to interact with NextGuide on smartphones than tablets. It was apparent that we needed an iPhone app, and decided on a mobile-optimized web versions for other devices.

This was about the time rumors of Apple ditching skeumorphism for flat design started surfacing. I took advantage of this to make a sea change in visual design to bring the products in line to current design trends, and improve the product.

The biggest UI change was also to have the biggest–and positive–impact on the business. I moved the main Action buttons to the forefront, placing them on the show tiles, rather than one level down on the show detail card. This dramatically boosted user interaction; we saw a huge uptick in users saving titles to Favorites and Watchlists. We also created our “Remind Me to Watch” feature, which grew out of the “set alert” action we had in the app, and proved to be the most valuable feature of the platform–for users and the business.

As for the website, what we began calling the WebGuide was designed to work and look beautiful on all devices, regardless of viewport size. With more than six breakpoints, there were few devices the site did not display nicely on. 

Using MixPanel and Optimizely, we were able to A/B test features, and design elements for both the iPhone and WebGuide on mobile & desktop, and optimize accordingly.

The new modular design developed for the iPhone would make updating the iPad app quick and easy, but before that could happen, Dijit was acquired by Viggle. Unfortunately, the acquisition put on hold many of the product updates we had in the pipeline, and almost all support on the apps stopped as members of the team were re-deployed throughout the new organization.  


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