Research, UX, UI Design, Branding / Coursework / 2019
How can we make tracking winter sports faster, easier, and more useful for athletes and enthusiasts alike?
Powder pairs simple mobile tracking with smart insights to help athletes of all levels get more from each pow day.
Adventure and Exploration, Conservation and Sustainability
Powder originally started as a redesign of an existing iOS ski tracking app titled, appropriately, Ski Tracks. As a skier myself, I was stoked from the moment I got the brief—being able to take user research and insights from existing apps on the market and redesign something to make winter sports training more accessible for all kinds of athletes is just what Ski Tracks needed.
Soon after jumping into the research process, however, it became clear that addressing all of the users’ needs would take a lot more than just a simple redesign, and the concept for Powder was born. Powder takes the best parts of Ski Tracks and builds them out into a new app, designed from the ground up to make winter sports tracking faster, easier, and more insightful, both on and off the mountain.
I identified four different athletes, each with different skill levels and needs, to shape the design of Powder’s experience moving forward. Some, like Ali, are just starting out, and want a little more help with learning how to tell how she’s doing and where she needs to improve. Others, like David, aren’t resort skiers at all, but still want the ability to track their distance-based winter sports, like nordic skiing, which many ski apps today current don’t support very well.
Ali’s just starting out; she wants to be a better rider, but needs an easy way to see how to improve since she’s not quite sure what she needs to fix.
Denny’s a snowboarder who’s at his local resort with his family. He’s all about convenience—whatever app he uses needs to be automatic.
Gavin's a very experienced alpine skier. He wants detailed stats for each run, plus the ability to share and compare his stats with his buddies.
David’s a nordic skier who skis both at resorts and in the backcountry. He needs an app that works for distance-based winter sports, not just runs.
At the top of the list of priorities was designing an app that was inclusive—both of various skill levels and various types of winter sports—as well as helpful, offering detailed stats, automatic tracking, and easy, accessible controls for both resort and backcountry use. And to help make those stats more actionable after you get off the mountain, Powder offers insights based on each day’s performance, too.
Powder’s colors, typography, and design elements are meant to convey clarity, first and foremost, as well as a sense of place—winter sports tend to take place in and on snow, after all. With added safety, social, and exploration-focused features and bold colors that reference the colors and vibe of the mountains, Powder helps any skier, boarder, or winter sport enthusiast get out and get going easier than ever before.
If you’d like, you can explore the UX prototype to get a sense of how Powder works in grayscale. Or, read about Powder’s research and design in greater depth by downloading the pitch deck below.