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Case study

MMC Marketing Backpack

Network testing… with a hint of marketing

The problem… slow internet speed

Network performance in public spaces is a headache for Telecommunication Companies since there are several factors that can interfere with its functioning.  A crowd during a concert will behave differently than a crowd in an emergency.  User’s media consumption changes constantly, and some other elements like terrain, weather or even leasing of cellphone towers add another level of complexity on a technological achievement that now could be considered as granted. If my cellphone does not have internet, the next reaction is tweeting my company is terrible… as soon as I recover the connection.

Companies get blamed for everything, but if we play devil’s advocate, it is really hard for them to have visibility on the ground.  For them to know what is going on, they need to hire the services of network technicians to test the quality of their networks. But that is something they can only afford sporadically, equipment is expensive and the cost of men/hours reduce the chances of monitoring areas constantly. That is why most companies rely on users complains to report those problems and they do not work on it until they notice that they have several unhappy people in on the area.

The solution

MyMobileCoverage developed its own low-cost benchmark box, which facilitates robust data collection on multiple wireless interfaces capturing data pertaining to RF environment, network performance, and GPS positioning.

The interface was designed with simplicity in mind.  The goal is making this highly sophisticated equipment so easy to use that anybody could successfully run a professional survey,

Time to talk about design

If you are a cellphone company, you would give you would love (and pay good money) to see something like this.  Green markers mean good coverage, red is bad and yellow not so great.

 We have three different kinds of pins.  A truck, a kiosk, and backpack.

 

For now, let’s talk about the backpack.

 

The marketing backpack… in lack of a better name

Network technicians are in charge of doing the repetitive of testing a network.  This is normally done with a benchmark box, which is a box like any other. A boring task on a boring box.

But what if this box is placed where everybody can see and allows you to start a different conversation, a dialogue where can show your users that you care, where you can exactly show how fast is your network, where your company has a face and this face is the face a good-looking student working part-time and being paid by the hour, and not an expensive network engineer.

The user will carry a marketing backpack through a predefined route.  In the meantime the backpack surveys constantly the area, sending reports about the conditions of the network. The events captured by the backpack are sent immediately to the MMC servers where this information is transformed into actionable data, providing network performance visibility in real-time.

The Mobile Marketing Dashboard

The events captured by the backpack are sent immediately to the MMC servers where this information is transformed into actionable data, providing network performance visibility in real-time.  MMC needs to provide all those insights as part of a dedicated interface that delivers those insights to the company stakeholders.

Controlling the backpack

The marketing backpack could be controlled remotely or by the user. Remote users could display specific messages on the screens according to the current test speed and offer special promotions to users.  This would allow the user to adapt the information displayed based on the network speed, so in case of slow detecting slow network speeds, messages would not make any reference to it.

The backpack was able to send images as a way to capture the reaction of people looking at the messages.

Controlling the backpack via mobile app

The backpack can be controlled with an app, making it easy for the user to check the status of the devices inside the back, run some test and check the information that is being displayed.

This flow shows how the app can be used to generate a network speed test.

The marketing backpack had a lightweight version, designed to weight a couple kilos, smaller volume and offer more mobility to the user, so it would not be hard to use in public events like concerts, parades or sports events.

Another application of the backpack was to use it as a kiosk inside stores.

Project takeaways

  • Innovation can turn something as expensive, boring and technical as surveying network performance into an opportunity.  An opportunity to provide better services, at a fraction of the cost and starting new and better conversations.
  • The internet of things as a great opportunity for developing experiences that challenge boundaries. As a UX Designer with a background from Product Development,  this project is a great testimonial of what the future of the profession will be.

About this client:

MyNetwork II is one of the multiple solutions MyMobileCoverage has developed to help carriers visualize the problem areas of their networks.

MyMobileCoverage is the leader in mobile analytics tools. It mission is to provide real-time analytics relating to network performance, customer experience and business intelligence.


Learn more about MyMobileCoverage

If you would like to discuss more, share feedback or ask any questions, please get in touch.