In-car Financial App

This page provides a higher-level overview of my process as the UX researcher on a team with three other masters students for designing an in-car financial application. This project was done as a part of the User Experience Design class at the University of Florida. In this project, my group worked closely with clients at the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) to design an in-car financial app.


Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) is a global conglomerate that is interested in exploring the future of financial services and accesses in a connected world. Our design problem was to explore how to design a financial service application for cars?


An in-car application that takes advantage of the real time system and internet connectivity within automobiles to allow users to access financial services on the go, in the most safe and efficient manner.

User-centered design process

As a team, we followed a user-centered design process: define, ideate, prototype, test, and refine.

Method: What did we do?

Our design process started with interviewing our clients from the Royal Bank of Canada to uncover their company needs as well as doing market research to look for similar products. During our user research, we conducted 4 focus groups with 17 university students and user interviews with 6 students.

Sample questions from our user research — used in focus groups and interviews

Results: What user needs did we discover?

  • Users should be able to access basic banking features such as checking the account balance without complicated authentications
  • In-car application should be non-distracting
  • Users want to be able to keep track of their fuel expenses, due dates for car maintenance or car loan payments.
  • Find where the nearest ATM is located quickly
  • To keep track of their expenses on a road trip.
Affinity diagramming to synthesize user needs

From user needs –> initial design solution

Based on our user research, we created persona (primary and secondary), scenarios and storyboards to guide the development of our initial design solution.

Meet Jake, our primary persona

“Oh, how do I keep track of how much money I have spent on my road trip. I do not want to go over my budget” — Tag line for our primary persona, Jake

Here is James, our secondary persona

“I want to see real-time stock updates and want to multiply money on-the-go” — Tag line for our secondary persona, James

Annotated wireframes for our initial design solution

How did we refine our design based on the user feedback?

  • Security mechanism: Our initial design required finger-based authentication. During design testing, users mentioned that having finger-print as a security mechanism for an in-car application can be distracting. For an in-car application having a security mechanism that does not distract users from their primary task of driving will be more helpful. Based on this feedback, in our second version we changed security mechanism to voice-based.
  • Customizable home screen: Based on the initial testing, users found the home screen cluttered. Based on this feedback, our design team made the home screen customizable. Users can customize their home screen according to what they want. This will make the user experience tailored towards each users’ particular needs and less frustrating.

High-Fidelity Pixel Perfect Prototoype

We tested the high-fidelity prototype with university students. Users were given a specific task during the study. All the users were asked to complete the tasks while using the think-aloud protocol to expose their mental models