Category Archives: Core77 forum

consumer products • Re: ARE ALL TV REMOTE CONTROLS BAD?

The core problem is cost vs perceived value. Having run up that hill many times. I worked on 4 remotes I’ve been proud of and many many more that have been brand slapped “credit card remotes”.

When I’ve been successful at convincing organizations to do something with integrity has been when I’ve made a clear case around these 3 points:

1) improved UX leading to higher amazon reviews, critical reviews, and other peer reviews (increased NPS)
2) improved industrial design leading to remote being left out (not hidden) and not replaced (not integrated into a third party universal remote)
3) increased cost being negligible if tooling can be amortized across portfolio (IE use the same remote for everything, takes a lot of feature planning)

The design principles I’ve used to evaluate the designs themselves are:

1) feature prioritization (making most frequently used features most dominant)
2) tactile navigation for high priority features (feel your way to key features without looking)
3) recognizing remote is the only physical touchpoint for the product so adding both visual and physical mass in a sculptural way

From there you can start concepting, evaluating, user testing, and refining and minimize the whiny complaining and personal bias

general design discussion • Re: Defending your design opinions

Theres no hard and fast rule on this one, it will partially be that your feedback will earn more clout over time. It also helps thinking about the feedback you’re providing and thinking:

-Is it constructive? Can someone actively do something with my feedback?
-Is it objective or subjective? IE “This doesn’t leave enough room for the battery pack clearance” is a very clear objective piece of feedback. “This battery pack would be better designed with a harder crease in the surface” is subjective and more easy to shrug off.
-If you were given your same piece of feedback, how would it make you feel or react?
-Is it possible the design has other requirements you aren’t aware of? Ex: “This handle would feel much better with a rubber grip, but there is a cost constraint that prevents us from adding one”

Sometimes phrasing your feedback in a way that either asks some of those questions first (making sure you’re aware of what went into the design) will make others take feedback with a better appreciation that you understand the problem a bit more. In any design firm, this is always hard regardless of seniority especially on teams where some designers may only see a design once every few weeks, and not know the weeks of back and forth that went into the decision process.

Some designers also just suck at taking feedback, so don’t get discouraged it will develop with experience like the rest of the skills.

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