Sustainability and eco-friendly alternatives exist in many shapes and forms. We were inspired by apps, companies, and even non-technology-related solutions such as refill stations that promoted recycling and sustainable living alternatives.
📱What it does
GreenUp is an app designed to seamlessly integrate sustainability into users' daily routines. By harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, GreenUp transforms the way we make eco-conscious choices. With a simple scan or search, users can instantly access information about a product's recyclability and discover more sustainable alternatives. Beyond facilitating informed decision-making, GreenUp goes a step further by analyzing users' consumption patterns and knowledge levels. This enables the app to provide personalized suggestions tailored to individual habits, while also offering a pathway for users to enhance their understanding of sustainable practices over time. In addition, GreenUp serves as a real-time information hub, keeping users updated on the latest developments in the environmental realm. By combining convenience, education, and technology, GreenUp empowers users to create a significant positive impact on the planet, one choice at a time.
🛠️How we built it:
As a team of 3 UX designers, we followed a traditional design thinking process. Starting with extensive research, we further understood the given product statement for ourselves and synthesized our findings as a team. We then ideated a few early concepts, mocked up and iterated on our best solution in several levels of fidelity, and prototyped our product in Figma.
🚨Challenges we ran into
- Defining our scope. We initially had started off our scope to focus on recycling and how we can encourage motivation to recycle. It wasn’t until after our conversations that we realized there was an efficient and proactive angle we could tackle this. The main challenge in regard to the change of scope was accounting for our timeline and due dates. Because of this, we did not get the equal opportunity to perform usability testing with the participants we had interviewed.
- Another large challenge we faced was our team headcount. We had started off as a team of 5 and finished with a team of 3. A former team member struggled to understand the importance of the design process, especially the research portion. Because of this, there was a lot of pushback and unwarranted redirection of our project goals. The former team member unfortunately was not a user advocate and did not align with UX principles. Letting go of the former teammate was not an easy task but it was necessary. Going from a team of 5 to a team of 3 was difficult as we had to take on more tasks, some more than others, but it taught us to work efficiently as well as communicate proactively and intentionally.
🤩Accomplishments that we're proud of
- We’re proud to come up with a solution that addresses the stagnant recycling rate from its roots. While we can’t motivate every single user to recycle due to several factors, such as differing personal values and the culture of recycling in their respective areas, we’re proud to have ideated a more creative solution that can be easily implemented across all users that slows the plastic consumption rate altogether.
- Another accomplishment that we’re proud of is our team camaraderie. We’ve been successful at delegating tasks that highlight each of our unique strengths and showing support for one another at every phase and through any conflicts.
- The connections we made during this design process. We got to collaborate with mentors who were encouraging, and supportive and provided tremendous insights on how to improve our design and concept.
🤓What we learned
- A problem exists in many forms. In this scenario, our problem was pretty straightforward–how can we move towards a sustainable future? Recycling and plastic consumption are byproducts of our problems. We learned that there is not a single surefire way to tackle a problem.
📈 What's next for GreenUp
- Implement features that allow users to partake in social/community challenges to encourage motivation to continue recycling & sustainable choices.
- Implement in-app purchases for larger profit margins.