The Press Play Project

A collaboration from ESPN and Pratt Institute's School of Information

For the Press Play project, ESPN sought out a team of researchers that could evaluate and deliver prototypes aimed at improving the mobile experience for watching ESPN videos on, with the ultimate goal of getting sports fans to “press play.”

From Pratt Institute’s School of Information, Craig MacDonald, Assistant Professor, formed a research team with students from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds and professional experiences who were interested in both interactive media and mobile technology.

The project began with the research phase, aimed at identifying ways to improve the experience of viewing ESPN videos on mobile devices. ESPN provided data on its video strategy to the Press Play team.

Insights gleaned from the research phase fed back into an iterative cycle of creation, where the team developed and refined prototypes that offered potential solutions to the problem(s) identified

The team continually evaluated, through comprehensive design critiques and in-person usability testing, the extent to which each prototype met ESPN’s goal of improving the experience of watching its videos on mobile devices.

For their final presentation at ESPN’s headquarters, the team delivered a demo video of the ideal use case of their prototype, summaries of findings from four original research methods, and persona briefs created from research insights.