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ACMI: Optimising 'The Lens' onboarding

The brief

Optimise the uptake, onboarding and engagement of the Lens (a physical hand held museum device) with existing constraints 

The solution

An iterated onboarding station with new messaging and more inclusive lighting feedback to help new visitors 

UX methods

Observational research and contextual enquiries, research synthesis, mid-fi prototyping and usability testing. 


Updated instructions at onboarding station and messaging for the Lens device, colour blind accessible lighting feedback 

the lens in use.jpeg


The Lens is a handheld device visitors take at the beginning the centrepiece exhibition, The Story of the Moving Image.

By tapping one of many readers around the exhibition, visitors can collect anything on display (and interactive experiences) in ACMI’s centrepiece exhibition. After they leave, visitors can log in online with their Lens code and see everything they've have collected / made.

The Lens and this experience is a relatively new concept for visitors to Museums and galleries.

The Problem

The onboarding station at the entrance of ACMI Museum's permanent exhibition was not effectively explaining how the Lens works, leading to confusion, congestion, less uptake and pressure on the visitor services team to guide new visitors.


We needed to:​

  • help onboard visitors quickly

  • explain the value proposition

  • provide visitors with the information most useful so they can move into the exhibition with the confidence to start collecting

on boarding messaging 1st round.png

Lens dispenser

Lens (NFC) reader

Printed instructions on A3 size paper would sit underneath glass with 2 x lens readers on either side

The process

User research: contextual enquiries

To understand the issues with the current onboarding station, I conducted 3 rounds of observational research and contextual enquiries with 3 small groups. I observed and recorded their interactions, and gathered feedback on the design and overall user experience. 


My observations revealed these groups were having difficulty using the onboarding station, with many struggling to understand how to access the various exhibits. 

Wireframing and User Testing

Based on findings, I created wireframes for the onboarding station. The design focused on improving the user experience by incorporating clear and concise instructions, clearer directives to 'Take your Lens' at the dispenser, clearer instructions on the Lens device itself, and update lighting feedback for when visitors tested their Lens. I also conducted user testing with a diverse group of visitors to gather feedback on all of these changes and the design and overall experience.

The result

The redesigned onboarding station received positive feedback from visitors and staff during user testing and was implemented in the first 2 months of the museum's reopening. Visitors are now able to navigate the museum with ease and are more engaged with the exhibit via the Lens.

The updated station led to a reduction in confusion, resulting in a better overall experience for visitors and for the Visitor Service team. This led to increased engagement with the exhibit and a better overall experience at the museum.

Changes made

  • Updated instructions at onboarding station 

  • Changed the success /error colours of the Lens readers at onboarding and inside the exhibition to be more colour blind accessible

  • A clearer CTA for visitors to take a Lens

  • Updated messaging on the Lens device

initiL 2019-LensOnboardingInstructions-LABELTESTJULY.png
V Shape
2471-LensOnboardingInstructions-MessageIteration-May2021-V1.2_Blk-GuidesOff (1).png

Changes made

Success / error lighting

blue light feedback onboarding.gif

A successful tap: a steady flash of blue 

magenta light feedback onboarding.gif

An unsuccessful tap/error: a quick flash of blue followed by amagenta colour flashing 3 times

Changes made

CTA on The Lens dispenser

take your lens.png
take your lens positioning.png

Changes made

The Lens: Design and copy

lens iterations_edited.jpg
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