Ostmodern are delighted to announce the result of our latest collaboration with Channel 4...
Throughout 2014, a team from Ostmodern co-located and collaborated with the online product team at Channel 4 to realise the underlying experience strategy and visual UI design for All 4 across desktop, tablet and phone. All 4’s global design language, the All 4 Experience Guide, also emerged from this collaboration.
Building on success
From the success of our work on 4oD it became clear that Channel 4’s digital audience was becoming increasingly focused on watching video. Other services previously offered on channel4.com including various channels, lifestyle categories and separate programme support microsites were attracting significant but smaller audiences. The All 4 project was borne out of the realisation that On Demand viewing should be at the heart of all of the Channel’s services.
Channel 4 is proud to work with Ostmodern. Over the years they have been integral in helping us develop a first class On Demand service. They were the obvious design partner to work with to bring Channel 4’s new digital service - All 4 - to life.
Stephen Hardingham; Head of Design at Channel 4
A Focussed Product
Ostmodern wanted All 4 to focus on what broadcasters do best. We wanted it to entertain, inform and engage audiences by offering simple and effective user journeys to specific content. Drawing on years of insight working with Channel 4’s audience, we saw the key to achieving this goal was to mirror within All 4, the audience’s mental model of Channel 4 the broadcaster.
Central to this vision was time. We knew that the audience would want to know, "What can I catch up on?”, “What is on now?” and “What’s coming up in the next week?" Then, within the concept of programmes themselves, people would ask, "Which is the most recent episode?” and “What have I missed?" We looked at the life-cycles of programmes and series and set out to produce an experience which reflects these timelines with simplicity and elegance. This timeline concept forms the backbone of the All 4 service, and sets the template for future development.
Completing the picture
Running alongside the user experience concept, the visual aesthetic of All 4 took inspiration from the new All 4 brand. Ostmodern produced a comprehensive, responsive design language which informs all aspects of the All 4 user interface across desktop, mobile and tablet devices. This enables Channel 4 to continue to develop functionality consistently across all these platforms.
Launch and iterate
All 4 launched in March 2015 and is continuing to develop along our concept roadmap. Across the redeveloped platforms, viewing figures and conversion rates are now even healthier than 4oD with substantial usage increases on Android. User testing of All 4 showed us that the simplicity of the product resulted in users discovering more unique content (such as archive) and successfully extending their journeys with related shortform extras. Users have also had a particularly positive response to My4, where users can keep track of their viewing and receive personalised recommendations.
The end result
All 4 represents a huge shift in the way a broadcaster engages their digital audience, putting programming truly at the heart of Channel 4’s digital presence. All 4 is not merely an extension of Channel 4, but a service which is the primary destination for Channel 4’s audience to find and watch programmes from across the Channel 4 network. David Abraham, Chief Executive of Channel 4 mirrored this: “We believe All 4 will deliver the most advanced broadcaster response to changing viewer behaviour in the digital age, It will help ensure that our content portfolio remains an important, valued part of viewers’ TV consumption for decades to come.”
Ostmodern have been working with Channel 4 since 2006 when we designed the initial incarnation of 4oD...