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In today’s fast-paced world, where urban mobility plays a vital role in our daily lives, smartphone applications have revolutionized the way we navigate and explore cities. Citymapper, a popular transportation app, has emerged as a go-to resource for millions of users seeking convenient and efficient travel options. Users can effortlessly map out their journeys, access transit schedules, and explore alternative modes of transportation. However, the absence of a ticket purchasing feature within the app has become a prominent pain point for many.
The inability to buy transport tickets through Citymapper implies users to resort to alternative methods. This inconvenience creates additional disrupts to the travel experience that the app aims to provide. Users are forced to switch between multiple applications or rely on physical ticketing systems, leading to a fragmented and less efficient process. Furthermore, this limitation may deter potential users from fully embracing Citymapper as their primary travel app.
The inability to purchase transport tickets within the application is a major inconvenience for users who rely on this app while traveling in cities where they are unfamiliar with the transportation infrastructure.
In order to gain a better understanding of how this affects mobility app users and how to develop a more efficient experience using the application, an interview was conducted with 17 volunteers.
From this interview, several conclusions were drawn that help understand the market, user needs, and Citymapper’s competition.
- 100% of the interviewed users use Google Maps as their primary mobility app.
- Additionally, 100% of the users use mobility apps when traveling abroad, and in 94% of cases, their primary app does not offer the option to purchase transport tickets within the app interface.
- 54% of the interviewed users have experienced problems when buying transport tickets while traveling abroad. These problems include different currencies, the inability to pay with a card, various ticket purchase methods, and determining which ticket is valid for different types of transportation.
- 94% of the interviewees would be willing to switch to a mobility app that offers the option to purchase tickets within the app interface.
Analyzing the interview results, one notable conclusion is that implementing a ticket purchasing system could be a differentiating factor that helps Citymapper position itself in the market above other similar applications and solves a problem that hinders the travel experience for many users.
The option of buy in should also consider that travelling abroad usually implies travelling with more people or in groups, so the new fucntion should have the option to buy tickets to several people in the same app.
In this stage the ideas and the problems are mapped together in order to have a bigger comprehension of the whole picture.
From this stage, several ideas came out:
- Include a new option “buy my ride” that includes all the tickets necessaries to get from A to B
- Include the option of buying more than 1 ticket, to solve the problem of groups travelling together.
- Add a balance option where you can charge money in a wallet and substract money from there
- The posibility of removing sections from the trip. This idea has been discarded, as 94% of the interviewed volunteers, would use this option when they do not have a monthly transport card of the city they’re in.
The proposed solutions in the prototype also take into account internet connection limitations, with the option to pre-load money into the wallet that can be used without a connection, or the possibility to purchase the journey but validate it at the start of the trip instead of at the time of purchase.
By default, whenever there’s money in the Wallet, it will be substracted from it. As in the assigment it is specified that all the information of the user is already in the App, an extra layout for the payment information in case the wallet is empty, hasn´t been considered.
If no ticket is needed to be bought, the button “GO” leads you directly to the route, so users with public transport card also use this app.
Design thinking is a challenging process to come out with a solution to a problem, but as the same time, the structure of the process has helped me to not get lost in the steps or go back and forward to different stages because I skipped important things.
Interviewing people has been very enlightening in order to understand the diversity, not only of the problems, but also of the different solutions that different users would find optimal.
I found the assigment very intersting, because I have also developed a process myself where at the very beginning I felt lost, with a lot of messy ideas without any common thread, and following the steps of the Design thinking methods, this ideas have settled in the propper stages and have lead me to an outcome that I am satisfied with.
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