Transforming the in-store experience with an interactive Apple TV app
Wahoo Fitness specializes in the creation of Bluetooth enabled fitness equipment that’s oriented toward year-round cyclist training. Wahoo partners with cycling and sport retailers worldwide to offer customers a hands-on, in-store experience with its most popular product, the KICKR Smart Trainer.
“Digital Scientists helped us drive sales for our KICKR Smart Trainer by developing an innovative and interactive Apple TV app that helps engage and educate our customers. The KICKR experience stations make up some of our most important real estate, but we needed help attracting customers to the stations. The DS team was able to accelerate these efforts and help us truly engage with potential buyers.”
Tyler HarrisWahooligan Product Owner
Wahoo initially came to us because the existing setup for its in-store KICKR experience stations lacked an effective demo for showcasing its product features to retail customers. Wahoo needed us to design and build a retail software experience that could grab customer attention and demonstrate the benefits of the Wahoo product ecosystem, enhancing the customer experience and freeing up time for store employees to focus on other aspects of customer service.
What we did
Wahoo Fitness partnered with us to design and develop an Apple TV app experience that could attract customers, highlight KICKR Trainer features, and educate the buyer on the benefits of the Wahoo ecosystem, while also creating a fun and engaging experience that lasts 5-10 minutes.
To validate this approach, we began with a rapid six-week proof of concept engagement, which included an alignment workshop, competitive research, site visits, user interviews, and three design sprints.
With the success of the completed prototype and continuing buy-in from our clients, we moved forward with the MVP phase of the project. Our mission was to provide a deployed Apple TV app that could integrate seamlessly with device hardware, while creating a backend admin to manage the application.
- Design & development
- Innovative research
- Usability testing
- Apple TV native development (Swift)
- Bluetooth / Telemetry
- Ruby on Rails API / Cloud integration
- Segment analytics
- Jamf device management
- Research synthesis
- Usability testing insights
- Proof of concept prototype
- Minimum viable product
Proof of concept
To begin our engagement with Wahoo, we needed to first validate Wahoo’s demo concept and help align priorities for the experience. To do this, we began with a proof of concept (POC) engagement with three sprints over a six-week runway. The POC included an alignment workshop, competitive research, user interviews, solution architecture, and rapid design & development.
Before starting any software project, it’s important to quickly set expectations and priorities. To accomplish this, we brought together all the Wahoo stakeholders (including the product, development, marketing, and sales teams) to align on product vision, user journey mapping, and service ecosystem.
Must. Could. Should. Won’t.
The key insight that came out of our alignment workshop was an MSCW exercise, defining what the product must, should, could and won’t do. This helped serve as our team’s roadmap throughout the initial six-week engagement and during our MVP project and final development.
Given the type of app we were building, we needed to extend our research beyond Wahoo’s direct competitors and instead look at companies that had created unique in-store demo experiences. We evaluated a range of in-store and remote demo experiences among leading companies that use interactive software to promote the benefits of exercise & training hardware.
Site visits & user interviews
One of the most vital aspects of validating the POC was going to local bike stores and asking employees how the KICKR experience stations are currently helping them sell the Wahoo products. Insights gained from those interviews helped us better understand the customer journey and helped inform our software design.
Prototype design & development
With the insights we gained from our competitive research and user interviews, we were able to rapidly design and develop a POC app. We launched the app inside Apple’s TestFlight and presented it to the Wahoo stakeholders for final feedback.
Minimum viable product
Once we provided Wahoo with a validated prototype of the KICKR experience Apple TV app in TestFlight, we continued the journey with them to create a true, releasable MVP. This 10-week engagement included:
- Usability interviews
- Seamless connection to Wahoo hardware
- API integration with the Wahoo cloud
- Content and user management admin app
- Help with device management
- Product release to the Apple TV store
To design the best possible experience, we took our prototype to Wahoo stores and interviewed a range of real users, from store employees to avid cyclists. As we observed each user interaction with the app and product, we were able to acquire important feedback and insights.
Apple TV app development
In launching a native iOS Apple TV app, Digital Scientists created a fully integrated experience for store customers to experience the Wahoo KICKR products. We also worked directly with our client to provide a device management solution to remotely deploy and regulate the experience for KICKR Experience users.
In-store Wahoo advertisement
To provide the Wahoo team with a simple way to showcase its content to prospective customers, we promoted the Apple TV app on an in-store Wahoo channel with commercials, product features, and sample assets. We also created independent bike movement on the CLIMB product, using IoT code, to catch customers’ attention as they walk by the stations.
Demo / race simulation
One of the app’s main objectives is to provide prospective buyers with a race simulation. Using telemetry and Bluetooth technology, we were able to simulate a real road experience. The simulation shows the speed and power (watts) that the user is generating in real time as they ride the KICKR Smart Trainer.
What’s a race simulation without a bit of competition? To create opportunities for in-store events and encourage more users to experience the KICKR, we created a leaderboard, which uses a QR code for users to fill out their information easily and quickly. From the form submission, Wahoo can send informational and promotional emails to users, educating prospective buyers on the Wahoo ecosystem of products.
In the last phase of the project, we designed a simple interface to give Wahoo a way to manage assets and leaderboard data for store events. We also provided Rails app so they could perform A/B testing and try out different assets.
Digital Scientists was able to escalate innovation and provide the Wahoo team with a flexible codebase on which they could easily build. Within five months of initial development, the Wahoo KICKR experience station app was launched in retail stores, providing customers with an enhanced first impression and education around the full Wahoo ecosystem of products.