“APP 4”: A new look laying the foundation for stand-out user experiences.
The new LIFX App, launching on Feb 11 - complete roll out expected a week later - is a completely new App experience.
It has been created from the ground up with more sophisticated control, putting efficiency and personality at the heart of its design. Prioritising automation, LIFX wants users to like it more, but need it less, by reducing the number of steps to get where you're going.
“People invest in smart lights to make their homes look great, and at the right times. We don’t believe people should have to be a slave to their screens,” says LIFX Director of Design, Rachel Wilson, “so the aim is to shift focus up from your phone, to your home.”
The design process
“Using a human centred design approach informed by user testing, beta customer surveys and social media listening, as well as our own experiences in our homes, we worked to build out the plan that became App 4. We wanted to lay foundations that would be helpful, thoughtful and personal; something that could live up to the promise of making homes smarter rather than just connected”, says Wilson.
So LIFX now present App 4, a modern and friendly face on a design system optimised for three common users.
- “The Whole-Home User” - The Dashboard now contains groups, and those groups can be controlled from the dashboard itself.
- “The Scheduler” - Scheduling and automation are users’ number one reason for investing in smart lights, so the new Schedules page - with a calendar view - makes creating and viewing your schedules easy.
- “The On-Demand user” - This person likes one-touch flexibility, but for pre-programmed actions. That’s why the Scenes & Effects screen now exists, which remembers your saved actions, and includes favourites, just like the dashboard.
New in App 4
Other notable features of the redesigned App:
- Personalize your dashboard with photos for Groups - choose functional room image, or just multiple photos of your cat. It’s up to you.
- The Discover tab helps you navigate helpful content and LIFX products.
- Foundation laid for future releases which will include even more UX advancements.
“4.0 is just the start of the App 4 experience. We are starting with a comprehensive aesthetic refresh, with new flows but familiar feature set. But with future releases,” says Founder and CTO Marc Alexander, “we will be adding more functionality that will unlock some key pain points for smart home users”.
Once the new app is downloaded, you won’t be able to go back to App 3, so best to get familiar with it here on the LIFX website (staging link for preview here - do not publish). Below are the headline usability changes from App 3 to App 4:
- The “Home” section is now 3 screens, giving you quicker control over your home, but deeper control over schedules and scenes/effects.
- The cards on the home dashboard can be expanded to quickly control individual lights or collapsed to control the group. When expanded you can see more lights in a set space. When collapsed, you can switch lights on/off and dimming from the card itself.
- The Schedules are now a calendar view making it easier to view and update.
- Effects are now found in the Scenes & Effects screen, and not within an individual device. This is so you can apply an effect to multiple lights in one hit and save that action. Previously, if you wanted, for example, to apply the Fire effect to 6 Candle Colour lights, you would have to go into all 6 lights. Now, this process is far more streamlined.
LIFX is committed to Smarter Light. More than just a lighting device manufacturer, they are a consumer technology business seeking ways to improve your day-to-day life. One bulb is all that’s needed to get started, so dipping a toe in the water is easy. There’s no need for an expensive starter kit with accessories, a bridge or a router. Just an internet connection. Founded in Melbourne, LIFX is now the second largest seller of smart lights in the world. LIFX is available online at lifx.com and leading retailers.