Mediafly and CytecSys have partnered to create an innovative new Internet TV device. We are looking for an innovative Channel Guide design as the Home screen on the device.
Restrictions (for Standard Definition minimum TV display):
It must look great at 640x480. I have included a 640x480 picture. Please use this as the background.
Limited use of rounded corners
Limited use of complex images. The less images needed to load into memory the better. But, if you use the same image(s) repetitively, that is great.
Make sure that font sizes are not too small. Remember it will be watched from a couch on a TV.
Sparing use of gradients (if any)
Sparing use of shadows (if any)
Attached is a VERY ROUGH mock up of what the guide should include and roughly how it might flow. But if you can achieve the requirements below, feel free to be innovative and creative about the rest. And dont hesitate to email me with any thoughts or questions.
The interface must be easy, intuitive, innovative, interesting, and discoverable (i.e. obvious how to use it).
Organize the UI into a guide showing channels and the first couple episodes for each. (see attached mock ups)
Show at least 3 channels and at least 2 episodes for each channel (if you are showing more than 3 channels and 3 episodes, make sure you are designing for 640x480.
Indicate which Channel AND episode is currently playing
Indicate which episode the user is currently selecting with the remote (note: this can be different than the one that is playing)
Ideally the guide should cover about screen so that video in the background is still partially visible while looking at the guide
Show an optional details/info window which would be displayed if the user presses info. This window should display all the details about an episode, including: episode title, show title, episode description, image, length, format (audio/video). (This should not cover up any of the guide)
A method to access other types of media besides the channels, such as Movies and Photos. (This might be a good use of the colored variable buttons described in the remote control section below).
Channel type breaks/groups, such as my favorites and most popular channels (one idea is in the mock up).
Show the channel number for the channel of the highlighted/selected episode.
Subtly indicate each episode status, which can include: not-downloaded, downloading, and downloaded. I have shown this with the little circle. It is necessary, but secondary, information but not the most important so it has to be available and visible but not distracting.
Now playing: Include a way to see what is currently playing including:
- Episode title
- Where in the episode the player is
- The length (e.g. how much is left)
Look at the attached images. There are some additional details.
Indicate which remote control buttons are usable and for what. Also, there are four colored buttons which can be assigned to any function as described below.
When you design this interface, remember that it will be navigated by a REMOTE CONTROL with limited buttons. In particular, there are some special buttons to keep in mind. I have attached an image called guide remote with some more information.
There are buttons on the remote specifically info, setup, del(ete), sub(scribe, guide as well as the ones you would expect (i.e. play, forward, back, record, numbers, etc.).
There are also four colored VARIABLE BUTTONS (red, green, yellow, and blue). These dont have any specific function so they can be assigned to actions on a particular screen. As such, we need to include indications on the UI as to what those buttons do.
We will be selecting a design which meets all of the requirements and adheres the most to the restrictions. Think Apple design + Cable TV Guide and then be creative to do it within the restrictions.
We look forward to your designs. Good Luck!
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