This is an in-depth case study for the design of the IKEA Harajuku App. If you are interested in an overview of this project, check out my portfolio page: https://kedingdesign.com/Project-Tokyo. For more details and info, you can contact me at kevincentding@gmail.com

Table of Content


Intro

18 startups invited to the second IKEA Bootcamp programme

In 2019, Jido Maps, which makes augmented-reality software that lets users save and recover digital objects from one session to the next, was one of 18 companies invited by Ikea for a “startup boot camp” in late March, following a selection process that drew more than 1,100 entries worldwide.

Along the way, Jido Maps built a great relationship with IKEA. And with the object detection technology and AR capability, it won over a contract to build an in-store AR app for the ready-to-open IKEA Harajuku flagship store in Tokyo.

With the vision to craft a smooth user experience utilizing Jido's spatial technologies, I started working for Jido as a contractor designer to help them shaping up this product. Later soon I was onboarded full-time as the design lead for the company to help to carry this project till it is shipped.

As the design lead of IKEA Harajuku App, here are the people I spend the most time with:

  1. The founders of Jido (who acted more in a PM role) for product strategy.
  2. Jido dev team especially front-ends for interaction designs using AR and object detection.
  3. IKEA Ingka design group to share design updates and to get critiques.
  4. IKEA Japan local team for their inputs and localization works. After all, they are the main client of the contract. 🤯 (so many stakeholders!)

As the only designer in the team, I created a special in-store AR experience from 0 to 1, with a bunch of unique interaction patterns. A customer that visits the Harajuku store can use this app to learn, browse, and even place an order for the product that they are interested in. Most of these were done remotely while the team was sitting in our armchairs in the States.


What does this app do?

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  1. With a "magic camera", it recognizes any products in the IKEA Harajuku store and uses a special 2.5D UI in augmented reality to annotate them.
  2. With a 2D bottom sheet UI, a customer can read and learn about the context of a piece of furniture, even add it into the shopping cart to place an order.
  3. Similar to Space10's IKEA Place App, IKEA Harajuku can also preview AR versions of over 1400 pieces of furniture.
  4. Some easter eggs just for fun :)

If you have an iPhone that is 6+ with iOS 11.3+ and happened to have an IKEA product next to you, you can try out IKEA Harajuku with the following link.

‎IKEA Harajuku


Who am I designing for?