Zee Entertainment has carved out a separate brand called Z5 to establish an identity as a leading premium content consumption platform. One of the key offerings of this new platform is an Entertainment module which in simple words will serve the needs of an Over the Top (OTT) product.
Z5 envisioned to create this as a global OTT platform which caters to all 5 senses, supporting HD content with seamless streaming for 1000s of concurrent consumers. The solution included offering content for devices like feature phones, smartphones, Smart TVs, Connected devices, Set-Top Boxes.
One of the primary challenges to this was to work with a single workflow while following different platform guidelines to maintain cross-platform consistency. Other key UX challenges came about because of their monetization model, a variety of programs and augmented products, all fighting for their space on the screen. It called for thinking and approach that is diversified and product-centric, rather than integrated and UI centric.
Drawing from our expertise and experience of working on OTT platforms our teams were agile and upfront in understanding the unique challenges and requirements from Z5. Based on stakeholder meetings and the product requirement articulated we worked on to formulate a common vision, strategies and design directions.
1. Laying the foundation
The first step was to generate a comprehensive information architecture categorizing, labeling and organizing the information in a cohesive layout.
2. Building navigation concepts
Key navigation concepts were differentiated on the basis of how to group information best, categorized across trending, cataloging or mood-based styles. It served the objective of allowing users to navigate most intuitively.
It was essential to determine what information to show the users at different levels of hierarchies making way for internal whiteboarding brainstorming sessions. The output led to the creation of wireframes for all different platforms.
4. Finalizing visual concepts
Creating a cohesive experience and building a common design language easily understood by the users we opted for a unified visual design system choosing themes, color palettes to give prominence to the content which needed to be highlighted.
Being our first android TV application, the platforms were designed with careful deliberation and necessary iterations to create a class-leading platform. From browsing to selection and viewership, our approach to design ensured finesse and relevance, leading to traction across age groups, in a digital competitive landscape for entertainment and content.
1. Design neutrality to delight
As an over the top output personal application, efforts were made to cater to all kinds of content; in a design-neutral way to maintain consistency across extreme use-cases of both western and Indian audience.
2. Multi-platform TV application
Zee5 was designed to delight across 4 forms of user platforms, contextualized and made relevant (ios, android, android tv, responsive web).
3. Browsing made relevant
A different way of weaving content through time (in mobile) was suggested and built, to recommend filtering of videos based on a time interval of content to be streamed.
4. Comprehensive TV guide
This guide helps users to browse through their favorite channels and gives a list of all shows that are currently live, allowing for customized filter and sort capabilities on the basis of language, category and sorts by popularity and alphabets. Consumers could also share and follow a show to get reminders.
5. Personalized profile
Users can now store multiple content under each category of watchlist, favorites, followed shows and set reminders, which can be easily accessed anytime from the profile dropdown.
6. Comprehensive TV guide
Designing live TV interactions requires a different approach from web and mobile interfaces. Understanding to choose the most optimal layout and structure enabled us to make key focus elements easy to access for viewers.
UX and Strategy workshop, User Research, Competition Analysis, Content Structure Audit, Prototyping, Wireframes, Visual System, Front End Development, Application Development.
The Z5 OTT apps were launched across platforms in the last quarter of 2017.