Products/Features tied to Consumer Insights

Just looking to share and discuss some very clear examples of products (or features) that are based directly from consumer insights. What comes to mind?

I think of the “Obol” and Ford’s new foot detecting hatch opener.

Painter’s knife: opens paint cans and works better as a screwdriver for that occasional need to sink a screw deeper into drywall (painters don’t carry a screwdriver)

ummmm … all of them?

Nice topic, I´ve been saving some examples.

(For some reason each post is limited to 3 images…)


And some more…

Good stuff.

IAB- I get your angle, but what we’re looking to share here are examples that obviously utilized user research (observation, interviewing, etc.).

You could make an argument that the painters tool may not be the best example, as it could have easily been the result of a user identifying a need rather than a designer. It’s insight is purely functional.

ryanid: not sure I get your angle then. painters were observed poorly using their knife as screwdrivers and carrying a separate tool to open cans.
are you looking for products that solve the problems noone ever had?

engio: Sorry, I didn’t have the background on the painters knife. Glad to hear that the function was based on observation, that’s what this post was intended to discuss.

Here’s another that came to mind. For all the people who said they like the brownie edges over the best.

I’m especially impressed with Ford’s hatch opener/closer. Mostly because they thought it through and understood the need for both open and close features. I’m assuming the car has a keyfob proximity sensor that turns on the motion sensor - I’m sure it is disabled when the vehicle is in motion or in gear but I wonder how they handle sitting at idle - for instance if I was sitting in the driveway with the car running at idle and my wife walked out of the house with a big wreath, walked to the back of the car and waved her foot, you’d expect the hatch to open…BUT, if I was sitting at a red light behind a funeral procession and put the car in park (in idle) to wait for the procession, could someone walk behind my car and wave their foot and run…laughing as my hatch came flying open? I wonder, I wonder.

Many years ago when I designed the Sightline Circ Saw, the fundamental differentiators of that product were direct results of consumer research. People have trouble following a line when cutting; poor viewing angles, dust covering the line, etc. The line of sight and the line of the cut had nothing to do with the location of the user’s hand - By combining the line of cut with the line of sight AND the center-line motion of the user’s hand, it became a much easier tool to use.

Off topic - but the answer is it looks for the RFID chip in the key to see if the key is close to the trunk (wouldn’t be set off while in the car) and then if the sensor is activated. Prevents it from getting a false signal.

Then it sounds as though it might not be quite as useful as first assumed. If I start the car (putting the fob in a cupholder as I often do w/ the wife’s Prius) and walk inside to get that big box I forgot, walk out, wave my foot and nothing happens - I’m not gonna be happy.

I can imagine watching a neighbor holding a big box, standing at the rear of their Ford, rapidly swinging and shaking their foot under the bumper trying to get the hatch to open, until they finally have to give up and open it with their hand. (BTW- I do like this clever feature)

Better yet, I can’t wait to see someone attempt this foot-swipe move on an 70’s hatch after they become accustomed to this feature. “Why won’t this work?!?”

…Kind of like watching kids using gestures on magazines or books. Anyone else witnessed this? Ridiculous.