UX Design for Augmented Reality Bathroom Finder App

I noticed Luke Wroblewski shared a concept of how it could look to use an augmented reality app that helps users find a bathroom.

Augmented Reality view leading user to the nearest bathroom.

Having experience with needing to find a bathroom immediately, not a few times in my life, but as part of a chronic battle with Crohn’s Disease, I knew this type of app could be useful for millions of those who suffer from Inflammatory Bowel Disease all over the world.

Looking at Luke’s design, it was simple, nicely done, but I wanted to refine it a bit, and see if I could improve on his initial design. Here’s what I came up with.

Refined design for an augmented reality app that leads users to the nearest bathroom.

The first thing you may notice is the floating arrow at the top. I was a video game designer for over ten years working at companies such as Ritual Entertainment and LucasArts.

Many video games have UI elements that point players towards the direction of their next objective. I did some quick searching in Google images and found a reference photo to use.

Top center of screenshot shows a floating arrow pointing player towards their current objective.

The issue I had with Luke’s initial design was that if users were not facing the path, they wouldn’t know which way to turn to find it.

If you are needing to find a bathroom immediately because of an illness, it’s incredibly stressful not knowing where one is. The Gotta Go app needs to be like a best friend, holding the user’s hand comfortably, and leading them towards the nearest bathroom quickly. The arrow at the top of the screen is that hand, saying, “I got you, and I’ll lead you to the bathroom.”

I also thought adding multiple options would be good, but limited to two. One is in red, meaning it is a more time consuming path, whether because of distance and/or traffic. The green path is ideal.

The green path has a texture applied to it that is animated moving towards the direction of the bathroom. This serves two purposes:

  1. To be more visually engaging for users
  2. To assist red/green colorblind users so they can see that texture differentiates the two paths.

I appreciate Luke for sharing his design ideas, and for you reading this. I’d enjoy hearing from you about your thoughts on the refinements.