2010 CHALLENGE

You work at a product design company. You have just secured a new client, a large multi-national corporation that is interested in creating a new product line for supporting and enhancing long distance relationships.

The client has asked your team to create a concept for a new communication product.

The client is not interested in conventional voice- and screen-based communication, since these are crowded spaces. They are also not interested in communication for the purposes of passing “information”. Instead they would like to focus on the emotional aspects of communication and enhancing a “sense of connectedness” that they feel is not well addressed by current products. They wish to introduce a surprising product with a physical interface that is totally unlike anything on the market.

The client recognizes there are many kinds of long distance relationships in the world, and they do not expect a generic one-size-fits-all product that could be used by anyone. They would place more value on a concept that is customized to the character of a specific kind of relationship. In other words, the strength of the concept for a specific group of users is more important than the potential for mass sales.

The client wants you to select an interesting group of potential users on which to focus your concept.

There is a tight deadline. In only one week, the client has asked that you present your concept at a meeting that will include high-ranking executives.

At this meeting, you absolutely must present a working prototype of your concept, to “bring it to life” for the audience to better understand. You must clearly demonstrate how the product would be used and enjoyed by the type of users you chose to design for.

The client would like you to prototype both the input and output aspects of your communication concept.

A compelling concept is most important at this stage – you do not need to delve into financial matters (potential pricing, cost of manufacturing, etc).

Based on your performance, the client will engage your company to develop several additional concepts in the future, and you will become very rich and famous.

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