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InsertCoin Mockup.jpg

Insert Coin

Case Study:
Mobile App UX Design

Project Overview

Date: 2023

Responsibilities: Sole UX Designer & Researcher

Case study of my mobile app UX/UI designs for the 1st project of the Google UX Design Professional Certificate program.

I explored designing the mobile app InsertCoin as a hub for users to easily find, discover, and preview arcades and their games from anywhere.

Arcades have long been houses of great enjoyment as social venues and entertainment destinations for friends, families, and game lovers. Many of these places hold great fun for guests but often lack the contemporary tools to reach the audiences who are looking for exactly what they offer.


The user research was focused on two user groups. The primary user group was young adults seeking local arcades as a social venue with their favorite arcade games. The secondary user group was parents with children in search of family fun.

In order to better understand my users and their pain points, I conducted interviews and created:

  • Empathy Maps

  • User Personas & Problem Statements

  • User Journey Maps


There are no central resources for arcade enthusiasts to both explore the vast library of video arcade games and discover local arcade venues where they can find and play the games they are interested in.


After the problem statement was defined and the goals of the design set, I began ideating on how to meet my users' need through

  • "How Might We" frameworks: Reframing the problem in different ways to provide guiding directions towards possible solutions

  • Crazy 8's: Rapid warm up design exercise to remove mental constraints on what was possible, allowing ideas to flow

  • Competitive Audit: By looking at both direct & indirect competitors, I could identify key aspects of their UX and user flows that worked well that I could incorporate to enhance my design and aspects that did not work well that I should avoid


Paper Wireframes proved the most effective method for my initial designs of each screen within the user flow of "find a game and an arcade, and add each to your favorites list"


After consolidating the multiple paper wireframes I created into a single refined version for each screen, I transferred them to Digital Wireframes in Figma and continued refining them as I turned those into my first Low-Fidelity Digital Prototype

Lo-Fi Wireframes
game page wireframes_edited.jpg
arcade page wireframes_edited.jpg
game page wireframes_refined_edited.jpg
arcade page
Test, Iterate, and Refine

I conducted a Moderated Usability Study on my low-fidelity prototype with a sample group of my target users to get feedback that I could use to iterate and improve upon my designs.

Round 1 Findings:

  1. Users want to understand the value of an app before giving out their personal information to make a profile

  2. Users want an easy and intuitive way to add something to their favorites list and find that list

  3. Not all users have the same understanding of CTA's that are either not common or not labeled

  4. Users have different preferences for the content they see on the home page

During the design of the High Fidelity Mockups and Prototype, I gave special attention to these Accessibility Considerations:

  • Color contrast ratios were validated to meet AA standards for graphics and the various text sizes and colors

  • Users could enter and exit the user flows at multiple points and can freely move forward and backward in each flow

  • Icon and button labels were added to help make navigation easier to understand

Usability Study
Hi-Fi Prototype
Takeaways & Future Steps


The app makes users excited about visiting arcades and playing new games and the one ones they remember fondly

"This app would make it so easy to explore all of the old games that make me nostalgic and the new ones I haven't seen. It makes me want to go play! Now I have a way to check out all the arcades around me that I could go play them at!"

- Research Participant

What I Learned

While designing the InsertCoin app, I learned that it is easy to get too caught up in the early and lo-fi design details. A lot of time can get squandered on work that will ultimately be updated when working on the high fidelity details in later iterations and have user feedback guiding the improvements you make to the design.

Next steps

If InsertCoin were to continue in its development, the next steps I would implement are:

  • Incorporate the ability to test gameplay within the app for arcade games

  • Populate the hi-fi prototype with content for more games and arcades and have the favorites lists accurately reflect additions and removals

  • Build out more functionality on the Profile Page so users can access their account information, settings, and security

  • Conduct another round of usability studies after building out more of the HiFi prototype's functionality to for feedback

*Case Study Deck available upon request*

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