Barnes & Noble

Barnes & Noble Nook

Rapid, iterative user research
Target audience and target market re-definition

First Gen. Color Nook Tablet
Barnes & Noble was releasing their first color tablet after years of being known as a bookstore and black-and-white eReader company. Deb helped the product team indentify resolvable usability issues and blocking software defects for their first release in a very limited time. Because the project confidentiality was high, she recruited family and friends who matched reading behavior profiles for concept and usability testing in pairs and small groups. Deb and the team worked through different hardware and software releases to finalize engineering, marketing, documentation, and design decisions as quickly as possible. Deb also engaged with the beta participants and executive team to report, review, and help resolve critical usability issues.

The Nook eReader
Nook wanted to release an innovative new version of the black and white eReader they had on the market for years. The product design team wanted to check the executive team's assumptions and develop a more clear picture of the type of customers for whom they should design an improved eReader. Deb designed a study with various discussion groups of different age and reading-behaviors to better understand who might benefit the most from an updated Nook eReader. The groups whose behaviors and interest most aligned with the new product offering was not that which had been previously identified by the executive team. From the detailed notes taken over the many discussion groups, Deb was able to facilitate a feature and design brainstorm that the product team used as the basis for critical hardware and software deisgn decisions for the Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight. Both products received strong reviews for usability and industrial design from CNET and the Wall Street Journal.

  • Scope
  • Iterative Discount Usability Testing and Prototypes
  • Alpha and Beta hardware and software
  • Beta Issue Tracking and Management
  • Hardware and Software Concept Focus Groups
  • Target Audience Behavior Group Discussions

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