Buddy intends to tackle the issue of personal safety; specifically at night. Whether it be walking to your car or going for a run; there is a certain amount of uneasiness and concern that comes with it.
Buddy aims to provide a platform for users to support and look out for one another, feeling safer together in the process.
To begin to tackle this large issue, we set about creating a key persona: Alice. Her needs and wants helped to guide and shape our design our the pain points of her transport experience.
Alice is 23 yrs old. She finishes work at around 6-8pm every day. Each day she walks 15 minutes alone to her car, before driving home to her flat. To get to her car she walks down a road without street lights. Although it seems like a safe neighbourhood, her flatmate's are worried about her walking alone at that time of night.
We wanted buddy to achieve a sense of calm and connectedness between both Alice and her flatmate's. When looking into what the market currently had to offer we found a lot of apps based on a panic button alert system. However, we found that the large red buttons seemed to encourage paranoia as opposed to creating a sense of safety.
Learning from this we went about designing a transport app that felt familiar and who's safety features were autonomous. We wanted buddy to connect individuals in real time through location sharing. Unlike a click or call Buddy needed to be able deliver critical information whether the user was able to access their phone or not.
From this we developed 3 goals to guide our design decisions.
1. Create calm not panic
2. Feel safe through connection rather than clicks
3. More autonomous less strenuous
When selecting a route to travel Buddy generates 3 options. The Safest route, the Fastest and the Middle route (equal considerations of speed and safety). This rating system is generated by the user feedback collected at the end of every journey.
If you stop abruptly, divert course, start running or drop your phone Buddy automatically checks in to see if you are okay.If you don’t respond in 30 seconds safety mode will initiate. This alerts your buddies, letting them know you are in danger.