RadioMv is a non-profit international Christian online radio station based in state of Washington. With more than a million listeners worldwide and 7.5 millions visits annually, this radio station grew from a garage based studio to worldwide broadcasting online in 5 languages. In 2015, they decided to design and develop a new mobile app in-house.
I managed this project from the beginning to the launch day. I had 2 interns that were assisting part time with administrative tasks, and a developer who wrote the code for iOS and Android. I designed the layout and UI for the app. I was the sole UX/UI designer for this project.
The radio station had an app in the app store before, but it became outdated and obsolete. It was missing the features that radio station wanted, and the app needed to be designed from scratch, rather than re-designed. At this point this was one of the 5 ways of listening to the radio station.
In addition to a brand new app, the radio station wanted to have both iOS and Android versions.
The project started by reviewing the current user and listener statistics, along with recently designed user personas, to determine the goals for the project.
According to Google Analytics, about a quarter of visits to the website came from mobile devices, with age statistics all over the board. We knew we would have to design for a diverse audience.
The radio station is faith based and geared towards Christian families. That meant we needed to consider ages 13-65+. The following are a baseline for the radio station's user and listener personas.
After reviewing our data, I knew that the app had to be simple and intuitive. The design would have to be simple enough for a child to navigate and versatile enough to accommodate 4 languages with 2 audio streams each.
The app needs to be available on both iOS and Android platforms, and in 4 languages”
In addition to that, the Russian language had an additional "Just Songs" channel with its own two sub channels.
The first step was to get a clear picture of how the user might go about the choices of language and audio quality. We couldn't really choose to launch the language based on location because our Russian listeners live all over the world. That meant we had to give them the option of choosing the language.
I began with sketching various flow diagrams of how the users might interact with presented choices. Here is one version that I ended up using in the final design.
After the "language and quality selection screen", the users would then arrive at the "play screen". There, they would be presented with play controls and a menu in the language of their previous choice.
That meant that there would be a total of 28 screens that would need to be designed.
Initially, I tried various approaches to the selection screens, including a drop-down menu.
After collaborating with the team, I came up with a design that was simple and logical, it took the user one step at a time, always giving a way back if they made a mistake or changed their mind.
Once the user would select the final choice of audio quality, they would arrive at the "play screen" which would present the play/pause and volume controls along with 7 other buttons. The "play screen" would contain:
At this stage, I designed the buttons and labels for each of the screens. The dark gray theme matched the radio station's branding. The buttons are simple and the text is concise and to the point.
After finishing all the other screens, I had to prepare the graphics for the developer, slicing them separately.
At this point, I also designed the App icon for the iOS App Store as they require a whole set of sizes of the same icon.
For this project I had a developer working under contract. He compiled the app for iOS and Android. Throughout the process, he would send me the builds and I would test them on my computer. I had loaded both Apple and Google SDKs on my machine.
Once the developer was done revising bugs that we would discover through our internal usability tests, he submitted the final builds to me. Then I was coached through the process of submitting the apps to their respective stores.
Google Play didn't take too long and the process was pretty easy, however with Apple things were different. It required a bit more time. Finally, the apps were approved and went live.
Since its release the app has been used by listeners in multiple countries. Many use it on a daily basis.
As a result of the new app design, the radio station saw:
Click here to check out the radio station app in the Apple App Store. Click here to check out the app in the Google Play store. Please keep in mind some aspects of the design might have been altered or changed over the years.
Website design and development by © Alex Gaidai 2020