How our interdisciplinary team invented and evolved a hydration personalization platform

CLIENT

Gatorade

LENGTH

2015 – 2017

CONSULTANCY

Smart Design

MY ROLE

Digital Lead

Please note that this is the second half of a 2-part Gatorade story. First half describes the functional prototype, field research, and strategy which informed this portion of the initiative.

THE BRIEF

Create and evolve a multi-component hydration personalization platform.

Carrying over from our 2014 strategy project, we were tasked to design, build and pilot a hydration personalization service for teams. It needed to be able to generate individually personalized sports fuel recommendations, track hydration related metrics, and help athletes and their coaching staff improve team hydration.

OUR TEAM

Program director

Digital design lead – me

Interaction and visual designers

Industrial design lead

Industrial designers

Technical program manager

Software engineers

Engineering, manufacturing and
event coordination vendors

MY ROLE

Team coordination

Content expertise

Field research

Interaction design

Art direction

Product management

Deployment and support

Internal and public
demonstrations

THE PREMISE

Why personalize sports fuel?

Individual Needs

Athletes require unique quantities of fluids, carbs, and electrolytes based on conditions

Performance Edge

Research shows a connection between personalized nutrition and performance

Injury Prevention

Hydration education and awareness by athletes and coaches helps reduce injuries

PROOF-OF-CONCEPT

We began by building
an end-to-end prototype.

In collaboration with our ZigBee engineering partners, I designed and oversaw an end-to-end proof-of-concept that validated core platform assumptions of bi-directional cloud communications between Smart Caps and a web interface. Taking only three weeks to make, it was an important gut check before we fully committed to our technology stack. I filmed and narrated the following demonstration video.

2015 RELEASE

In the first year, we built and piloted
the platform with high schoolers.

Design and development of every component had to finish in time for summer sports.

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Installations at several high schools took us and Gx Stations around the country.

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We continued to evolve features based on feedback and made multiple research trips.

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2015 platform components included a Station for dehydration and weight tracking, a mobile app for access by athletes and coaches, Smart Caps for intake tracking, and platform admin interface.

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2016 RELEASE

We then redesigned the platform from the ground up for use by professional sports teams.

Context shift to pro teams necessitated a complete redesign of the digital experience.

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Together with GSSI scientists, I defined the Rec Engine, platform’s primary algorithm.

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I also crafted product presentations and literature and led many demonstrations.

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The streamlined check-in and -out experience on the Stations was able to process 90+ football players in just minutes.

Together with Smart’s in-house prototypers, I also designed a travel version of the Station, intended for use by teams on the road.

GOING FORWARD

The platform continues to evolve and is being used by select NFL, NBA, and international teams.

Gatorade produced the following platform demonstration video, shared at the recent SxSW festival.

More by me.

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