Select Page

INTRODUCTION

Planit was designed within my HCI graduate course at DePaul University. The project was worked on with a group of four students. Planit is an all-in-one planning app for aspiring travelers looking to seek the most experience out of their trips. Book your flight, schedule your activities, and begin your plan on your new adventure. Planit also lets you stay connected with your friends and family by sharing your experiences with one another on its social platform.

Starting Process – Routes

Originally, our app was called Routes and encompassed several features. Routes focused on getting real-time navigation information based on the size of the vehicle, hiking trail information, road tripping with multiple locations, and displayed featured attractions on the map.

We soon realized that Routes simply contained too many ideas that would not necessarily be practical for an every day user. We needed to focus and narrow down the app’s primary focus and job.

Moving Forward with PLANIT

We pivoted our idea and decided to focus the app’s primary function on helping users plan activities for trips and vacations. After much research, we discovered that this is a common issue for many planners, for people have to use many different services to book a flight, find appealing things to do on their trip, and simply navigate through a new location. Why not put all of these things into one app? Alas, Planit became the new challenge.

We made sure to not make the same mistake twice by implementing too many features into the app and ultimately bombarding the user with a cluster of information. We began by sketching out the primary content that Planit will contain, such as the itinerary list, profile page, and social feed. This content will act as the main functionalities for the app. We strived to make its purpose as simple as possible, and that is to allow the user to book their trip, schedule and plan their activities, and also share their trip with their friends.

Sketch of settings screen and navigation bar

Group sketchs of user flow models and lo-fil prototype interactions

Digital Narrative

The digital narrative allowed our group to actually envision the app’s functionality in a real-life scenario. We decided we wanted to experiment with a businessman traveling to a conference in Paris and wanting to see as much as the city as possible during his stay. We began laying out the timeline of the specific events that the businessman could partake experience using Planit.

Storyboard brainstorming and narrative layout for traveling business man scenario

Storyboard Scenario

Business man traveling to Paris from New York for a business conference. The conference is at 7:00PM and he wants to plan his trip accordingly to explore the city as much as he can.

The businessman is attending a conference in Paris for one day. The conference isn’t until 7:00PM and he will be arriving in the early morning. He wants to see as much of Paris as he can so he begins to plan his trip with Planit to assist him.

The business man commences the rest of his planned trip with his chosen activities such as grabbing lunch and then heading to the tourist attraction he selected. He uses Planit to call an Uber back to the hotel to prepare for the conference.

Since the conference was only an hour long, he decides that he wants to keep exploring Paris until he is ready to head back to the hotel. He uses the feature, “Plan Again” to create a new trip plan. He wants to grab some dinner before heading back to the hotel so he makes a reservation for a local restaurant directly through Planit. After he finishes his meal, he heads back to the hotel since he has an early flight. The next morning, he makes it to the airport and catches his flight home. He returns home happy because Planit saved him a great amount of time and money.

iWatch Prototypes

Along with the mobile smartphone, we decided to create an iWatch version of PLANIT. We realized that it would be very helpful to the user to receive notifications for when their next trip is scheduled to make sure he or she will stay on track with the plan. The iWatch version can also provide directions for when to turn while arriving to their next destination.

User Testing Report

We were able to test three people for our mid-fi prototypes: Mobile app and SmartWatch. We began by writing the initial script for each of our test subjects, providing them with a simple instruction to book and schedule a trip to Paris. Each of our group members took on different roles for each test, switching off as the moderator, note taker, and recorder. Below lists the test scripts for each interface.

Test Scripts

User Testing Results

Analyzing the Data

Hi-Fi Prototype

A New Way to Plan your Next Trip

Create your Trip

Stay Connected

PLANIT does not only allow you to plan your trips accordingly, but also enables you to share those experiences with your friends and family. The app includes a social feed of your friends’ recent trips. The user is able to view, rate, and even travel using their itineraries by using the Explore feature.

Simplified Navigation

Planit creates an entirely new way to navigate to each activity. Users are able to view their selected activities and corresponding information with their destinations formatted out in a timeline view on the left side. Users are also able to swipe into map view, which displays the specific area in which each of these destinations are located.

Smart Watch Ready

Planit offers a SmartWatch interface as well. The watch version will sync with the itinerary and provide updates and notifications for when and where the next activity is scheduled. The interface also provides GPS navigations, providing the user quick directions when arriving to their specific destination.

User Flow & Wireframing

Below displays basic wireframes and user flows of the app’s main, primary functionalities and principles.

Styleguide

A listening of the color schemes, fonts, and icons that were used to style the interface of the application.