DEVICE PROXIMITY

Project Overview

Primary designer on Device Proximity, which is a new Microsoft technology for Windows 8 where two users can tap their devices together, open a NFC (Near Field Connection) channel, and share photos, music, video, hyperlinks and other file formats. Additional NFC scenarios include tapping a mouse/physical keyboard to device or a Phone to device to open a paring or sharing session.

What I did

Cross-group collaboration  //  Concepting  //  Hardware / software integration  //  Interaction design  //  Prototyping  //  Visual design  //  Icon design  //  Guideline documentation  //  User Research  //  Platform design

Tap and Do Use Cases

Windows provides several use cases to support the Tap and Do gesture.

Use case Description
Tap and Setup Tap and pair to setup a peripheral wireless device with Windows.
Tap and Reconnect Tap and reconnect a previously paired and setup device with Windows.
Tap and Use Tap and connect your app with one running on another machine.
Tap and Launch Tap and invite a user on another machine to launch an app your are running.
Tap and Acquire Tap and invite a user on another machine to obtain an app your are running.
Tap and Send Tap and send content you have selected to another device.
Tap and Receive Tap and receive content from another device or poster.

Tap and Send (click through)

  • Sending device

  • Sending device

  • Sending device

  • Sending device

  • Sending device

  • Sending device

  • Sender device tapping Receiving device

  • Sending device

  • Receiving device

  • Receiving device

  • Receiving device

  • Receiving device

Imagine you wanted to send photos from your device to your friend’s device. You could use an email attachment flow or you could select the photos, open a Tap and Send flow, tap two devices together and magic happens!

Working with my Research and PM partners, we created the Tap and Send user experience, accessible through the W8 Devices Charm fly out. Core to this experience is the design of the Send and Receive user flows. A series of user studies that identified the unique capabilities of this feature opened up a wide range of future scenarios for the use of this technology.

Creating a NFC connection

Windows 8 devices with NFC chips provide native ‘tap-to-share’ support. This will help users receive and send content from another NFC supported device. This technology simplifies syncing scenarios to a simple tap, which can be used to pair Bluetooth devices, share data and more.

Microsoft NFC Touchmark logo design

The tapping of two devices together is a requirement for starting a transfer, as each Proximity enabled device contains a small antenna that is readable from the back of the device. This required a “marker” on the back of the device so users would know where to tap and initiated the design of an icon Touchmark that could eventually be the iconic representation of Microsoft NFC technology.

Touchmark icon

Partnering with a Windows Personality designer, I explored a series of “Touchmark” icons that we reviewed with the Device Proximity feature team. The final Touchmark icon design needed to represent the technology. We settled on an icon with two device forms and a center point of focus.

NFC Touchmark on a Samsung tablet

OEM Partner with the Touchmark in-place

Tap and Send OEM documentation (click through)

Partnering with the Content Publishing team, I created a series of illustrations for OEM partner guidance that shows where the Touchmark antenna will sit in devices like peripheral hardware, All-in-Ones, Desktops, Slates and Clamshells based on our recommendation.