Checking Your Hair
We’ve all been there; roll out of bed in the morning, cruise through your morning routine—shower—coffee—water the plants—sit down and start working, without so much as glancing at a mirror. If you’re lucky enough to be one who works in sweatpants and a tie (read: remote work), this may sound familiar. Sometimes the first time you see yourself is when you load up Zoom and your face is broadcast to the team.
If you’re lucky, your video conferencing tool provides a “check your hair” screen, where you can take a quick look at yourself before broadcasting to the world. Seems like a nice service, right? Well, the hair-check feature actually accomplishes more than just giving you a virtual mirror. In reality, this feature helps you use the conferencing app better, and improves your experience.
- Shows you your face so you can adjust
- Shows you your own background to help avoid embarrassment
- Gives you a heads-up that you’re about to join a video/audio room
- Gives you a chance to mute audio or turn off video before joining
- Helps others know when a new person is joining their room
- Helps introduce the visuals and controls of the app to new users
It’s actually in the best interest of the app designers/developers to provide you with this interface. Not only is it handy for the user, it reduces confusion and frustration, which ultimately makes the rest of the designers’/developers’ jobs easier—and the app better. Here’s a look at the hair-check interface we made for Swivel:
We’ve learned a lot by building this interface, and we hope to continue iterating on it as Swivel continues to improve. What do you think? Can you think of a time when you wished you had an interface like this, but didn’t?