Android TV was something that PBS users had been prodding us to design for as soon as the platform was released, and we worked tirelessly to give them an experience that would be consistent with the rest of our digital products. This project was really fun because it gave us the ability to extend a lot of google's new material design thinking into our ecosystem. The 10 foot UI structure, the idea that OTT users interact with these platforms in a more relaxed, indirect fashion, means that it becomes increasingly important to focus on the core experience of the app. In addition to that, very few OTT providers offer a many customization options which can be pretty limiting so we had to get a bit creative. We stripped out a lot of unnecessary design elements like images, buttons, text and overly complicated menus to present a clear set of actions or options for each screen.
Establishing the idea of a "user-hub" was one of the first things we did across all of our digital platforms and we obviously wanted to incorporate that same thinking onto our television experiences. This was meant to give people greater control over the way they consume our content and this is really where we belive the value in our products lie. From homecreen, users can quickly access all of the information directly related to their viewing habits. They can resume watching videos, get updates on their favorite shows, and see their watchlist and viewing history.
One of the main goals for the larger re-design of all the PBS digital video platforms was to create an immersive experience that would better connect users to the shows they love and also create an ecosystem that allows them to discover new shows within our vast catalog. We did this primarly by leveraging show key art to link a show's branding and imagery with it's content and genre so users would immediately recognize what they are viewing. We also designed a system that pulled in the most recent videos from each show; creating an environment where the content always appeared fresh and up to date.