Product Design / Interaction Design / Service Design


Expand ridesharing to underserved populations that may otherwise find ridesharing to be difficult or impossible to use.


Anticipate the unique needs of riders and enable riders to inform drivers ahead of time of their wants and needs. These features will allow an even broader user base beyond the initial intended audience.

Image source: Sozialhelden

Ridesharing has evolved into a mainstream form of transportation for a large number of commuters across the world. There are numerous applications that leverage on this concept and provide ride sharing services at affordable prices. Many users are able to implement such applications on a regular basis and rely on applications such as Uber and Lyft to book ride sharing services for both business and leisure in their daily lives. These services have acquired a diverse user base that includes working professionals, travelers, students, and beyond. With such a broad user base a need arises to cater to their diverse needs, but current ride sharing applications lack features that meet and anticipate such user requirements. Our team identified additional user groups which we believe can benefit from an application that would meet their specific needs and offer a more personalized ride sharing experience.

Based on our team's prior experiences, we noticed that people who are handicapped; travelers with pets and luggage; business travelers, etc. have concerns when using ride sharing applications. They have unfortunately been in situations where the drivers have cancel the ride after arriving at the pick up location because they can not accept pets or can not accommodate people with accessibility needs. Even travelers and shoppers have issues with their extra luggage in ride sharing vehicles. Such cases result in a waste of time and money for both driver and rider. Our team feels that ride sharing applications need a better feature set and the ability to provide personalized experience that caters to the needs of these type of riders.

We identified 3 potential user groups that need specific accommodations in terms of space and accessibility:

    Group 1 — Riders with disabilities and accessibility needs
    Group 2 — Riders with extra luggage (such as business travellers and shoppers)
    Group 3 — Riders with pets

1 After determining our intended user base for the initial concept, we identified our goals for the project with accompanying measures.

  • Goal 1 — Identify potential needs and aspirations of diverse user groups of ridesharing applications and develop a feature set that will be part of the perceived ride sharing app.
  • Goal 2 — Develop an effective design for an application that incorporates a feature set that meets requirements and aspirations of the determined user groups.
  • Goal 3 — User is able to complete task successfully and use application with minimal errors and effort.
  • 2 Paired with our goals, we determined the most appropriate methods. We began with interviews of users who could be included in our intended user groups as well as experts in those user groups. Following the interviews, we organized our findings using an affinity diagram.

    3 Following interviews, we performed an analysis of our user groups and found the unique needs and opportunities of each group, then determined the commonalities between different groups as well as opportunities shared amongst all three groups of those with disabilities, extra luggage, and pet owners.

    4 With our findings from our initial interviews, we developed personas for each group.

    5 We began the design process of our app by recognizing what our intended user groups had in common and consolidating them into a paper prototype and performed a quick usability test.

    6 We were able to immediately improve upon our design through usability testing and designed a mid-fi prototype using Axure. We performed a usability evaluation of the mid-fi prototype and another iteration of the prototype, which followed up on important details in our design.

    View full prototype

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