Calor is a smart shower faucet that safely and efficiently delivers your desired water temperature with a temperature sensor and through suggestion and reward system, it gradually guides you to the 5-min shower recommended by EPA to save water.
In response to recent articles and news on California drought crisis (SF has already had the water saving campaign all over the city), saving water becomes more important and inevitable.
Current market offers faucet fixtures/systems with either simple yet limited functions at a low cost or high-end at a high cost up to $5000, not including any cost for installing or pipe rerouting.
Disassembling a fixture and understanding how a valve and a cartridge work together result an approach: design for retrofitting.
As the cartridge remains to be a hardware, I begin to explore some organic/dynamic forms that would give a break from the handle-turning faucet fixture stereotype.
Besides a physical form, an interface would be helpful in providing feedback to users as they set the temperature, so I quickly explore the information visualization as well as the interaction of the interface.
I clean up the interface to display quick and sufficient information without adding too much complexity. I decide on the “turning-a-nob” interaction for its familarity of current interaction and remains its nostalgic and analogical feeling of turning a faucet handle.
With this attempt, I replicate the task of water-mixing with a 3D-printed cartridge prototype driven by a motor.
I also prototype the setting temperature interaction with Arduino to test the setting and counting down. Check out the code on Github.
The App connects with Calor to expand the function and service of a typical shower fixture even before and after the shower.
According to a survey I conduct, 1/3 of people keep their phone with them while they wait for hot water. Therefore I harness this result with this system response diagram, and make their phone more useful by informing suggestions and collecting/compiling data.
Extracting functions from the diagram, I lay out the overall architecture for this mobile app and then begin to wireframe focusing on the composition and interaction.
Transitioning from wireframes to mid-fidelity mockup still requires some additional iterations and tests to create a clear information hierarchy and consistent visual language.