iPlayer Kids

A rapid and lean UX project, the iPlayer kids app was turned around from concept to app store within 6 months.

Once the project was given the green light we had to work extremely fast. Strategically it was important that the product was launched rapidly but also, as with all new products, the earlier we could get it in the hands of the audience the sooner we could really start to learn.

Initially we looked at competitor apps as well as the existing iPlayer app. Some of the big challenges we faced were trying to ensure we created a design that would be as appealing to a 5 year old as a 9 year old. Our standpoint was that we would only change designs where there was a barrier to children. This would ensure that we only developed features necessary for the audience as an MVP.

I have a large amount of experience testing with children so we rapidly made our assumptions on the backbone of the product and set about creating a prototype for testing. One of the biggest changes to the iPlayer design was our assumption that children would find an exposed navigation easier to navigate as opposed to the drawer mechanism that is currently in the main iPlayer. Initially we also explored removing search but looking at the data on the website, search was frequently used. During testing this was further validated, children as young as 5 where typing into text boxes to search for programmes, and this became the primary discovery mechanism.

Due to the rapid nature of the project it was felt necessary to bring Moving Brands into help formulate the branding and avatars whilst the internal team focussed on the UX and visual design of the app.

Although challenging due to the pace, number of stakeholders and third party branding, iPlayer Kids came together brilliantly. A huge sucess so far for the BBC.


UX&D Team
Robin Gibson (Snr Designer)
Wez Elliott (Snr Designer)
Suzanne Clarke (Mid Designer)

Moving Brands

Facillitation, Team lead, Strategy, UX Design, research

iPlayer Kids appstore
BBC Blog: iPlayer Kids

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Early prototype, designing for children often involves creating richer looking prototypes. I created this one in Proto.io

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We created experience maps based on our childrens personas, looking at potential problems for our users.

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Final iPad designs, we'll now look to see how our audience use the app, there has already been feedback to add Chromecast.

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The profile set up allowed us to customise the childs feed of programmes appropiate to age. It also allowed us to introduce personality into the app.