In school we were tasked with finding a problem in an existing system and inventing something that could change the way we interact in that system. My team was passionate about travel but most of us agreed that what can stop someone from traveling is the language barrier and uncertainty that comes along with not speaking the language and trying to navigate a new space.
Our design challenge was to design a user friendly wearable that can help ease the pain for the solo traveler. We ideated on how we might design a user friendly product that will help travellers, especially those travelling alone, overcome the language barriers. Together we used design strategy and to try and solve people’s fear of the unknown.
The travel industry is a $7.6 trillion dollar industry and travel and tourism constitutes 10% of the world’s GDP. Only 15% of the world’s travelling population are solo travellers, but the numbers are continuing to grow. More than half of solo travellers want to explore local life and immerse themselves in culture, and 33% of solo travellers stated they want to travel to learn a new skill. Optix aims to further increase this percentage, thus providing more economic growth to many countries around the world through travel & tourism. Below you can see the branding we applied to our product as well as some ideation we had on differnet frame styles.
We wanted to get rid of the awkwardness that happens when a traveler is trying to order food, get directions, or other basic inquires. How might we design a wearable that’ll effectively help travellers learn, read, and communicate any language without having to look down at a language manual or spend time months before practising certain phrasing? We all agreed that navigating a new space is hard enough without having to try and decipher a new language as added cognitive strain.
Our design solution was a wearable augmented reality device that helps travellers learn and translate any language just by targeting any text or object while wearing a pair of glasses. This device features photo recognition, audio and textual translation software. See below images for our precident research, idea conepts and screens.