Say App: UI/UX Redesign

Say App

Say is a mobile application by Impulsa Co. that approaches language learning with a fresh approach that prioritizes speaking. Using AI, Say helps users build and practice phrases in another language to "say what they want to say" without having to learn theory.

Design Challenge

The Say app was trying to understand their target users and the hierarchy of their learning tools. Prior to their launch in July 2023, I was asked to analyze the user experience of the app and provide improvements to the flow.

My responsibilites for this project include: consulting, conducting user research, and re-designing the Home screen.

Research

Understanding the User

We invited a volunteer to perform user testing and speak their impressions. Our objective was to answer three main questions:

  • What do people do unprompted?
  • Is there a sense of flow?
  • What changes need to be made on the Home Page?

Based on this walkthrough I created a persona to visualize a Say user's motivators, desires, pain points, and biases.


Say Persona by Cat Hong

Lindsay

the Immersive Vacationeer

Motivators: To brush up on Spanish and go deeper with grammatical nuances and pronunciation. Also driven by challenges

Desires: Wants a personalized experience where learning is based to her own tempo and built upon a goal in mind (e.g. traveling somewhere, being able to discuss everyday concepts with her parents). Loves flashcards.

Pain Points: Dislikes linear systems. Feels limited in other language learning apps that don't explore advanced topics like politics.

Biases: Anticipates correction on pronunciation or conjugation of words. Believes that vocabulary is necessary to advance in a language. Skeptical of the depth of AI conversations.

Analyzing Original Design

Say Home Redesign critique

Sketches

Say Home Redesign sketches

As a culmination from discussions about Say's identity and valuable user testing, I began redesigning the Home screen with sketches. I considered layouts not only from other language learning apps, but other apps that succeeded in measuring personal growth such as activity trackers, games, horoscope apps, and banking.

The Visual Redesign

I created mockups of two options of Say's Home page.

Option 1

  • Addresses immediate graphic design issues.
  • Prioritizes personalized user data such as day streaks, how many words and phrases they've learned, and their own name.
  • Buttons are more descriptive and styled like physical buttons to increase learnability.
  • Top Bar Navigation: Simplified to two actions that users would benefit from on all pages of the app – Language selection and Settings.

Option 2

Iterated from Option 1, Option 2 advances in the usability and playfulness of the app.

  • Personalization: In addition to user data and greetings, the Buttons reference how the user used the app previously.
  • Voice: With the Buddy acting as a peer, I emphasized the voice of the app as relaxed and casual.
  • Non-linear Guidance: Introduction of daily challenges to inspire the user's goals for the day and educate new users what is possible.
  • Bottom Navigation Bar: Creating quick access to the Sentence Builder – a unique activity in addition to the Buddy and Phrasebook.

Takeaways

Working with the Say team for their design sprint was a valuable experience. It was an invigorating challenge to design the flow and navigation of a language learning app that boasts multiple activities. It opened my eyes to different attitudes about AI and its potential to educate users in different settings.