Designing for Travelers - From winning Evernote DevCup to join
accelerator program

Back to 2013, we were all worked at a startup that thought our competitor were Dropbox and Evernote, that was the peak of Evernote I think, then there was a chance to show how powerful Evernote’s API could be, and we decide to join the battlefield - the Evernote DevCup 2013 to see if we could make something interesting.

Date: FEb 2013 - Nov 2013
Teammates: Steven(Tech Lead) / Big Chou(iOS) / Aaron(Web) 
Role: UX Designer
URL:
App Store
Tags: #mobile #SideProject #BestTravelApp #HondaInnovationAward #AppStoreFeatured

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"We thought of Evernote as the most powerful information collector from almost any platform"

No formal Ideation session.

Steven and Aaron shared their travel experience, unlike me, they are both well-plannd traveller would collect as much information as possible before the trip, Evernote’s tools make information collecting become way more easier than ever, and the flow would look like this when you travel with Evernote :

1.Before the trip - Collecting information from everywhere via Evernote
2.In the trip - Lookup your evernote notebooks and search for keywords
3.After the trip - Organize all your memories manually

How to travel with ease and powered by Evernote?

If you check how to travel with Evernote we just listed, looked good but still got some problems that you don’t know until you start your trip, here are the problems:

1.Limited internet data access that would impact whether you could get info from your Evernote notebook offline or not, offline search and access are premium users only

2.You still need to search in Evernote when needed, like the restaurants near your hotel, exhibition in the museum,etc

3.Photos and all the awesome memories need to be organized manually after the trip, it’s not an easy work most of time

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Geo-Fencing plays a big role on Xing that made a huge difference while you traveling with those well-collected info.That wasn’t a new technology even in 2013, and what we did was just added on two more steps into the original flow when you collect information via Evernote - Mark location to your notebook and import to our app before you go, also, you’ll get a beautiful auto-generated trip timeline after the trip.

Layers and interaction sketch

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Joined Accelerator Program

Pivot!? Well, Kind of!

We figured people didn’t travel as often as we thought, especially like a long well-planned vacation, even you did, the time and money limited the number to four times a year, so , experiencing those inconvenience while you panning the trip not like the pain in the ass, on the other hand, people who went on business trips that are way more than casual vacation that they also want something alternatively could help them do something, all theses made us realized two things:

1.Lack of user engagement due to the travel use cases was so limited, you may only open the app 4 times a year

2.We served those well-organized users, but how about a lazybones who did nothing but only booked the tickets and hotels before the trip? there was still something missing


 

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The Revised Problem

“Most travelers spend a lot of time in thinking where to visit if they only have limited time.”

The Solution

An app turns your day into an unique adventure

We came out a tool could give you recommendations that based on your preferences, available time in between schedules and you could even ask for more details by reaching out your friends who knows you way more than we did. With NextStop, you could get recommendations, connect friends and explore anywhere. 

When google released Google Trip, people talked about how search engine would empower the big data to make planning a trip as easy as searching for results on google, but I don’t buy in that since the big data or trendy recommendation are not based on my preference, I am the person who loves urban than wild adventure, loves history than just check-in to those been tagged “must visit sightseeing spot”, loves ice cream than Thaifood, and I don’t really care about what most people do when visit the city, so if the recommendation can’t understand me, it’s useless.

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