Timers, alarms, and music have emerged as a few of the most used features across all Alexa-enabled smart home devices. In research, customers cited one of their main pain points as the inability to multitask. Customers wanted to be able to dismiss an alarm without shouting over their music or turn off the lights without waking up their partner. To address this, we worked over a year to develop a new feature called Gestures.
Gestures is a new way to interact with Alexa without using your voice or needing to tap the screen. It allows you to dismiss timers by raising your hand, with your palm facing the camera of your Echo Show device. I worked cross-functionally with product, engineering, and design leadership to develop the initial requirements. From there, I stayed involved with the project as the lead designer from concept through research to final delivery in the market.
This feature can come in handy when it is inconvenient to speak to Alexa or touch the Echo Show screen. For example, when you want to dismiss a pasta timer with greasy hands while blasting music in the kitchen, you can simply lift your hand to end the alert.
The result of this project was an inclusive experience that introduced a new input modality, empowered customers who may be nonverbal or have limited mobility, and received positive reviews in publications such as the Verge, Tech Crunch, Forbes, Gizmodo, and PC Magazine. Want to know more about this project? Reach out!