When I was taking the metro in the most romantic city in Europe, Paris, I encountered the “Franklin D. Roosevelt” station, which serves lines 1 and 9. This was an interesting station. Besides the modern decoration, it had an interactive metro map – a great idea for this station, one of the busiest in Paris, a city that serves approximately 42 million tourists a year.
Being a tourist, I found the map entertaining and easy to navigate. The gestural interactions were mostly scrolling and pinching. If the user gets lost on the map, there is an accessible return button, which brings the user back to where “Franklin D. Roosevelt” station is located. Even as a user with low French skills, I was able to interact with the map very easily. I could see where I was located, create a route on the metro, and even switch to the bus map.
Designing a successful product requires a deep understanding of multiple audiences, the context, their goals and needs and how they will behave. Defining the problem and selecting the most instinctual behavioral pattern solution is essential, as well as having the right visual design. As a User Experience designer, I could not help but think that this interactive map must be very helpful to the main consumer, in this instance, multiple cultural users who are new to Paris.