Our UX Academy students who were enrolled on the Beginner UX Design Course recently achieved great success working with Blindlee, a blind dating app. In this user experience design case study, we take a closer look at the dating app, including what the app does and why it exists, in addition to improvements that were recommended by our students and the positive outcomes achieved after the project. Student projects at UX Academy involve real-life company experiences, team working and mentorship. Below you can see their UX portfolio for Blindlee.

About Blindlee

Blindlee is a blind dating app connecting strangers (matching certain criteria) on 3-minute blurred  video calls, after which they have the option to match. Their gamified calls allow the first  impression to be based on personality rather than enhanced pictures on a digital profile. 

Blindlee’s mission is to connect people together through the power of video and make genuine connections without disappointment or potential cat-fishing.

“As Blindlee calls are synchronous, there is not always someone available on the other end of the line — a classic network effect problem.” – Sacha Nasan

The Challenge

Improve the user experience to maximise user engagement:

  • With the main goal of going on a synchronous video call
  • When that is not possible, then give other options to engage with asynchronous features

Initial Research

  • The brief
  • Press release articles
  • Stakeholder interview
  • User interviews

…and an unexpected learning curve  👀

The Brief

  • Single people aged 23-40
  • Looking for something more meaningful (instead of casual)
  • Personality is an important part of the equation

And so is beauty – but that shouldn’t be the first filter so it comes later during the call when you unblur!

TechCrunch Article

  • Blindlee is a female-friendly blind dating app
  • University students to young professionals
  • Likely to have grown up with the internet and video culture.
  • A video call should therefore be a pretty comfortable medium of expression for these singles.

Forbes Article

  • A new social media service blending the free-flowing style of Tinder with the video function of Zoom.
  • Refocus on shared chemistry or other interests before they lay eyes on each other
  • They’ve seen an increase in app usage, even with people who don’t necessarily want to find romance
  • Of 162 people surveyed, 94 people (58%) hoped to meet their blind date opposite number in person as soon as the world opens for business again.
  • Some 22% said they used Blindlee for solidarity and moral support, or just to have someone to talk to in lonely lockdown. Finally, 17% said they were using Blind Lee simply because they were “bored.”

Stakeholder Interview (Highlights)

  • Quality (current users) over quantity (new sign ups) is the goal
  • People get discouraged because no one pick ups
  • Not enough people on the app at the same time
  • The video calls can cut off and both parties can no longer ‘match’ each other
  • If no one is available to interact, there’s no incentive to stay
  • There is not enough things to do when waiting for people to call

How do you define maximising user engagement?

  • Encourage users to jump on a call immediately
  • Increase time spent on the app interacting with other people, in other ways
  • People want to enjoy using the app (and come back again and again)

User Interviews

Target group:
People who haven’t used Blindlee before

User research goal:
How do people use online dating apps

HWM Statement

How might we help users get comfortable using the blurred video?

What if we designed a solution — around making users more comfortable using blurred videos — but didn’t actually solve the problem?

How did we pivot?

  • Got in touch with Sacha for user feedback
  • Come up with a new HMW statement
  • Did another round of crazy 8s
  • Empathy map and customer user journey
  • Developed and refined the concept
  • Maintained our sanity

“Design is an iterative process and it is normal sometimes to question an outcome and take a step back. It is part of a Design Thinking process and as designers, we should learn to become comfortable with that :)” – Giulia Barra

User Feedback from Sacha

User Research (Highlights)

  • No one ever pick ups
  • No matches
  • Can’t see availability
  • Currently have to manage do not disturb option
  • Not managed to find people to talk to

New HWM Statement

How might we encourage users to stay more engaged on the app?

Empathy Map

  • “I’m confused with the home screen”
  • “There’s nothing much going on.”
  • “Why isn’t there anyone to talk to?”
  • “My profile feels empty.”
  • “Weird how there’s no one else online.”

Customer User Journey

Sketched Wireframes – Home Screen

Usability Testing – Key Findings

  • App easy to understand and intuitive.
  • Games not clear.
  • Did not understand schedule feature.
  • “I love the matches icon!”

First Prototype – Screen Examples

Figma Prototype Presentation

UX Academy Alumni team members:

Denise Bernard
Felix Ma
Filipa Ferreira
Panit Nice Chantranuluck
Shel Soriano

Whether you want to start a career in UX, or just diversify your skillset in general, UX Academy has several courses available to suit your needs. Get the chance to work on real life projects and build your UX portfolio when you join UX Academy.

, , ,