A new wave
of telepresence.

A new wave of telepresence devices

In mid 2013, I was part of a ‘Pod’ deployed at Samsung’s R&D facilities in downtown San Francisco. A pod was a commonly used name at Kwamecorp for a group of creatives determined to tackle a specific and challenging briefing.

What was initially a very broad brief started getting narrowed down after a few brainstorming sessions and explorations. Keeping in mind the focus on disruptive ideias for communication, the team slowly entered in the telepresence realm. An enormous amount of work was put together by a team of 5 (+1) in between the Lisbon office and San Francisco. Deliverables consisted of several Research, UX, UI/Visual Design and Industrial Design iterations.

The end result consisted in a concept of three different models for a new telepresence device, aimed for a tight group of family relatives and friends. This would be a hands-free, high definition visual and audio asset for the household. It would capture sound and motion signals to inform others in the circle about a user’s presence while maintaining a beautifully and reactively animated ‘privacy curtain’. And for last, it would be constructed to outlast the everyday life of a family.

Although the number of explorations was huge I’ll be focusing this showcase on two different design approaches where my role was of most importance. I was very pleased by the fact that the final deliverable followed with one of my concept designs, the 'Moiré Patterns' concept.

The ‘Galaxy’ approach
My role: UX, UI Design & Motion Design 

Based on an initial idea by Dominik Seeger and further developed by João Ferreira I was in charge to iterate on these designs and to animate it to the standards of a tech giant such as Samsung. My love for After Effects is no secret and this was a delight for me accomplish. 


This next video shows a minor selection of design and motion explorations for the ‘Galaxy’ visual approach. From conveying the idea of activity/presence with animation, informing about the weather to opening and closing video connections and revealing a file transfer area. 

The ‘Moiré Patterns’ approach
My role: UX, UI and Visual Design

It was common ground that the visual trickery and glowing effects of the previous visual direction was no more a thing of the present. It was time to further explore on a much more minimal and modernist path.

The moiré patterns exploration ended up being the selected visual direction of the final deliverable. Overlapping lines of different shapes and colours would create optical effects that would convey the ideia of activity and presence in a subtle and elegant way. I started with a rounded display device in mind.


—Explorations started with subtle colored shapes


—Typographic explorations went on as well


And we have a favourite!
By this time, the utmost simplicity of this proposal was named the winner. The overlaping lines creating optical effects were chosen as a visual direction for this project. It was now time for additional exploration.


—Explorations of different shapes and colours. I started with a 'pastel palette' keeping in mind that these sort of colours would blend perfectly with the majority of the interiors. Later I went on exploring a more vibrant colour palette as well.


IRIS going Portrait
Keeping up with the iterations made on the Industrial Design side of the project that was running in paralell, it was now time to explore a portrait version of the moiré approach.


Interaction Areas
Adapting the user interface to the correct areas of the industrial design.


Helder Barão: UX, Visual & Lead Motion Design
Guillermo Landin: Lead UX Design
João Ferreira: Lead UI & Visual Design
Dominik Seeger: Visual Design
Eduardo Ulrich: UX & Motion Design
Yair Neuman: Industrial Design

Samsung R&D America (via Kwamecorp)

San Francisco, California
Lisbon, Portugal