Sony CLP Project

A way to personalize TVs using mobile devices

Duration: 8 Weeks             Team: Akhila Nivarthi, Eva Luong, Cuien Wu, Samantha Prestrelski            Skills: User research, UX design, Prototyping


As a participant in the Sony Connected Learning Pathway 2021 program co-led by the Design Lab Community Team and the Sony Human Factors Team, I worked on a project that developed my design skills. I worked with a mentor from Sony and a team of three other peers at UCSD to complete this project, and we were given 8 weeks to come up with a solution. My team’s design brief was: “How might we make watching TV a more personal experience with your phone?”

My role in this team was leading the user persona and storyboarding step, as well as contributing to our prototype along with the rest of our team.

Our solution was a mobile app that that enables the user to navigate and personalize a TV from a mobile device.

Problem Statements:

How might we make watching TV a more personal experience with your phone?

How might we integrate personalization as a core feature for TVs with multiple users?

User Research

We started off conducting our own research, using a Sony TV provided to us by the UCSD Design Lab. We explored the features and current capabilities of the TV in order to understand what we need to solve.

We decided to focus on college students and young adults, since they are more likely to be living with roommates and desire privacy. Students and people with roommates are more likely to share streaming accounts or profiles, and some may want privacy on a shared TV.

We conducted user interviews on college students and recently graduated professionals about their thoughts on the current privacy of TVs and what privacy and personalization they may want.


From the interviews, we also learned that many people would rather use their phones than TV to log in to streaming services such as netflix. From there, they connect their phones using airplay or a similar feature in order to watch it on the TV. Some people also struggled with the interface of a TV, commenting that it is “more complicated” than a mobile device.

Personas & Storyboarding

After our user interviews, we used our insights to create a user persona to represent our target audience.

Our persona was named Jenn, a 24 year old software engineer who is living in an apartment with four other people. They have a TV in a shared living room which all of them use, and all of them have their own accounts for various streaming services and across multiple devices. Jenn wishes there was an easier way to switch accounts on streaming services such as Netflix or Hulu.

We used our persona to create a storyboard for a scenario:
Using this storyboard and other ideas we had brainstormed, we came up with our solution.

Prototyping & Final Designs

We decided to prototype our app on Figma. Since our time was limited, we only managed to complete a lo-fi prototype.

Our prototype includes personalization and privacy features that we believed would benefit our target audience.

Final Thoughts

Since this was a short term project and we did not have time to complete usability testing or hi-fi prototypes, our next steps would be to continue working on finalizing our prototype. This experience was a very memorable one for me, as it was my first step into the world of UX design and all the excitement it can offer. Presenting our final prototype to Sony executives was another experience I am incredibly grateful to have been able to do.