How can we through speculative design explore traditional UX design conventions in relation to e-commerce, in order to create room for reflection regarding the frictionless user experience?
Shoptimal is an app-based design concept meant to explore the potential future of shopping. By allowing the app access to your phone’s camera and your behavioral patterns, while scrolling, Shoptimal will shop online for you. It creates a virtual wishlist, based on what items it has noticed you liked or disliked and orders them for you, allowing the user to get what they want, while remaining surprised. The shopping experience has become completely frictionless, and the user will not even notice that they are shopping.
Through this design concept we are able to explore the tension between what companies potentially want their users to want and what the users actually deserve. We argue that the field of UX does not inherently account for the user, which raises the question of: is the user considered a consumer or a citizen?
Niklas Bentzen & Clara Skensved