Artenpik is a technology company specializing in developing highly engaging augmented reality experiences on mobile for museums. Artenpik is the perfect technology to stimulate young people's interest in cultural institutions.
It’s all started with a hackathon. Talents (startupers, developers, designers) from all around France were invited to compete in the hackathon: "Happy Hacking Days 2015" to bring art to young people through new technologies.
With relative strangers, we formed a team of 7 people. I was the product designer.
We had 54 hours to make a prototype. So the clock was ticking.
Our brainstorm quickly led to the museum experience. We all found the experience in museums old-fashion and boring. So we asked: what a way to remember museums and how could we ensure that young people had a great experience every time they visited a museum?
We quickly turned to Augmented Reality (AR) as a digital tool with the potential to present information intuitively in the real world.
We saw an opportunity to work with the French Museum “La Piscine” as one of the member of the jury was the museum director. Nice move! You’ll see it later. 😉
The museum “La Piscine” is a famous museum in France. And they showed that they were committed to education. We saw an opportunity to innovate with them.
What I did: I designed an educational AR mobile app called Artenpik for the French Museum "La Piscine".
The client: Art & Industry Museum "La Piscine"
The user: Young museum visitors
The challenge: How might we provide young visitors with an immersive and engaging educational experience?
As we defined the challenge that would drive our design, we had 3 assumptions:
Our challenge space, which we tweaked slightly after conducting our initial research was:
We knew that we needed to answer the questions:
During our interviews, young visitors shared a range of terrible and wonderful museum experiences with us and told us what they valued as a visitor.
Our museum visitor looks like Lisa. She is a teen, goes at high school. She is into art and music.
"The museum experience should not be boring.
It should be fun and interactive."
Lisa’s problem is that she finds the museum a boring place. She just really enjoys learning about new things. However, she has a short attention span and has trouble retaining information.
We conducted a design sprint of few hours instead of days to rapidly iterate upon a design for our initial prototype.
Our initial design concepts prioritized visitors’ learning experience as museum content, informational context, and guide experiences emerged as primary needs for our visitors.
We quickly saw Augmented Reality as an opportunity to combine the form and content and reveal hidden secret stories about artworks.
In terms of immersion, we knew that this was a key area for improvement from our interviews and provided an environmental sound effects as well as small overlaid animations. We also gamified the experience with a lock / unlock artworks feature. In this way, we sought to provide context for the museum pieces while also providing a multi-sensory experience that engaged the imagination as well as the senses and rewarded curiosity.
We created the wireframes and then the low-fidelity version of the app, and we iterated the main features. Our research showed that visitors found the app intuitive and enjoyable and 100% of testers said that it was something that they would actually use.
Following user tests of our mid-fidelity design, we were able to increase task success rates by up to 50%, largely by using more specific copy in our help section, use of color in our UI, and removing the AR status indicator and letting the app’s functionality speak for itself.
We won the Hackathon! Do you remember? One of the jury was the director of the museum La Piscine. 😉
We changed the name of the app from Virtual Art to Artenpik.
We closed a contract with the museum.
Of course, we redesigned the app as we made more user researches and interviews. We also included museum tour guides into the project to define the educational content and promote the app.
I cofounded the company and we raised founds.
Artenpik, over a year time, was downloaded by 20k users.