Viveport Infinity

Creating a potal to virtual reality applications, games, and videos

When I joined the Viveport team in 2018, VR content was still inaccessible in terms of both hardware and software. While HTC's VR hardware team worked on creating an accessible HMD (head mounted display) for consumers, the Viveport team worked on making sure that VR content would be readily available to the increasing VR user-base.

Role
UX Designer
Key skills
Conceptual Mapping, Research Synthesis, Wireframing, Rapid Prototyping

Examining the VR Landscape

Before beginning the project, the team needed to have a strong understanding of the common problems that existed in the VR landscape. There were a couple of key problem points that were relevant to our project that we examined and discussed.

VR software and hardware are expensive and can require technical knowledge to run.
There is a lack high-quality VR titles; Many titles are short experiences and have little to no replay value.
The "VR" experience can be vastly different; There is a diverse amount of headsets and types of content

Where we began

In order to address some of the challenges in the problem space, the original Viveport service was launched in January 2018. Users could purchase VR titles but could also opt-in to the subscription service where they were allowed to "pick and play" five titles. While this model addressed the limited accessibility of VR content, it also created a number of frustrations from the user's perspective.

How can we make VR content more easily accessible?

Our team needed to gain insight in order to leverage our  platform to enhance the  customer's experiences. We began by considering how the "all you can play" subscription would be integrated within the VR ecosystem in order to make sure both developers and VR users's needs would be satisfied.

Identifying Key User Needs

The team also relied heavily on user research to develop insight into which areas of the platform needed improvement. We observed a lot of grievances in multiple areas, particularly discoverability of titles, and library management. With the collected observations, the team created two key user needs that we would keep in mind throughout the projects in conjunction with the Viveport team's design principles.

Discovering Opportunities Through Journey Mapping

Equipped with the insights we had gathered from the previous discovery phase, we started by creating an idealized customer journey experience.  We referenced past NPS surveys and used concept mapping to examine possible opportunities.

Iterating on High and Low Fidelity Concepts

2D Touchpoints

For 2D touchpoints we set out to re-design many of the existing components and attempted to create a more modular design system. Modules were interchangeable sections that would work across resolutions and platforms. For prototyping 2D areas, we used UXPin, a React.js based prototyping tool that allows for true CSS interactive states, logic, and code components.

VR Rapid Prototyping

I was also responsible for creating some low to mid-level VR prototypes to test Viveport Infinity VR concepts. For higher-fidelity VR prototypes, I  worked with the team's VR prototype to make adjustments and to give feedback to designs. To validate early concepts, we utilized a Sketch plug in called "Sketch-to-VR" (later we would start using DraftXR) and Google Cardboard before forwarding the concept to our VR Prototyper. 

Project
Outcomes

Design Decision

Change what users see first

6 out of 10 times, a user opened the desktop application to return to content they were playing from a previous session. We moved this content to the top of the page for easy access and tried to feature personalized content before showing what was popular in order to adress VR users diverse tastes in genres.

Design Decision

Help the user make informed decisions

We designed the title card as an intermediary between the home page and detail page. Users could now launch titles straight from the title card and a number of changes were made to help users determine if content was interesting to them. Firstly, we added the number of reviewers as well as a short description about the title.

Design Decision

Only show relevant content

Another design decision was the creation of the HMD filter panel within the navigation bar. Users would no longer see incompatible titles in their recommendations. For users coming from the Cosmos or Vive Pro OOBEs (out of box experiences), we would be able pre-select the HMD for them.

Design Decision

Bring the user's important content to the VR space

Previously, the user's library was not available in the Viveport VR application. In Viveport Infinity, the user's library is now available so that users can access their important content without taking off the HMD.

Measuring Impact

To measure our success, the team monitored key metrics such as our NPS score and number of subscribers. We also listened to reception from our target audience and found that key task flow success rates had risen across the board.

  • 23.6% increase in NPS
  • 240% increase in number of subscribers
  • Positive reception from target audience

Reflection & Project Takeaways

Working Viveport Infinity provided me with a lot of new understandings for designing in VR. The problem space challenged me to think about how we can could make things as smooth as possible while still considering technical limitations. While the live product does have its kinks, I'm proud of the immense amount of work that the Viveport Infinity design team put in to creating what still has the potential to be a widely successful service.

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