Beam is an iOS client for reddit. As a reddit user, I was stoked to be a part of the team to create what I believe is the best reddit experience on iPhone. As part of the team working on Beam I influenced many parts of the app, from visual design, icon design, UX flow and feature development.
One key feature in Beam which I designed is the ability to create posts. While the initial version of Beam did not include this feature, due to many user requests we went ahead and decided to include this.
My initial vision for creating posts was very much based on allowing the user to focus on the content they want to post and not getting in the way of achieving that goal. To add any kind of content to reddit (text, a link, photography) the user would engage in one singular experience and based on the content they added the app would recognise the kind of post they where creating.
However this proved to be something many reddit users did not understand, since reddit requires users to select which type of content they wanted to post before creating their post. What I perceived as solving a problem actually created a new problem due to the expectations of the user.
After going back to the drawing board I came up with the current implementation of “create post”, which you can find in Beam right now. We allow the user to select which content type they wish to upload and then proceed to the corresponding user flow. Users loved the end result and it’s become a staple feature in Beam.
You can find out more about the product on the Awkward case study.