WinBro — Smart Window Agent

The downsides of a quickly growing company can sometimes be very subtle. Be it escalating kitchen situations where no one puts away their dirty dishes, be it the fact that the weekly chocolate supply now only lasts for about 5 minutes until it has completely vanished, or be it more and more occurrences of windows that have been left open after leaving the office.

It was the latter that made us think about this problem in a more intense way. Since we are part of a big corporation, there are processes for all possible scenarios. This, in our specific case, resulted in many security alerts whenever the windows have been left open. This eventually became evident in the monthly cost overview of the office.

It was clear that we needed to act! 🦸‍♂️

WinBro app on iPhone and iPad.

The Technical Part

If you read the last sentences carefully, you might now think: “That’s great! Since the security knows about open windows, there must be some sort of sensors that you can use!”

Unfortunately, we cannot. But we went on and created synergetic forces together with our IoT colleagues and installed our own sensors at the windows. We are using two-parted sensors on the windows and their frames and transmit their state (open or closed) using the LoRa protocol.

We pushed the WinBro app to the phones of our colleagues. Also, we installed two stationary tablets at our entrances. All of the devices now display an overview of the current situation at our office. Furthermore, and because we love GDPR, we included a completely anonymized location tracking of individuals. This way we are able to provide the number of colleagues left in the building and remind those that close to or inside of the office about open windows.

Dynamic backgrounds to reflect the current daytime.

The Visual Part

We wanted to stand out from the crowd and make using WinBro a fun experience instead of what you would expect from a security tool.

Also, instead of just showing information, we wanted the people to start interacting with the tool. We wanted it to become a companion for our colleagues and ourselves, that fulfils a true purpose.

The decision was made to go with a gamified approach that is fun to use. We went into an isometric design direction while holding onto our brand. You can easily swipe through the levels of your office and zoom into rooms by tapping on them. Open windows are indicated by light. Each user is able to subscribe to one or multiple rooms and will receive push notifications at a custom time.

More about WinBro

For more information about WinBro, check out the WinBro project on Dribbble or the WinBro Case Study on Behance!


We are Hiring!

Take a look at our current vacancies:
merck.design/career/


Thanks for reading our story! We’ll be continually posting new stories here that you hopefully find valuable for yourself. For more information about us, have a look at our Instagram, Dribbble or Behance accounts.

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