I am on my vacation, and not suppose to brag about software, but something has happened on my way to Israel, that just couldn’t go away silently. To get from Calgary to Tel-Aviv, I had to fly with Lufthansa for 9 hours first. The Airbus 340 is a decent plain. It’s flying, and it’s as comfortable as a Economy class can be. What blew me away was the entertainment system. Let me break this down.
As an airline customer, I want to be able to watch the movies on board, so my time on the boring flight could go faster.
Does this user story sounds too much to ask for? Nope, I think it’s a decent business case. As a customer “trapped” on board for more than a couple of hours, constrained in movement and in general ability to do what he/she wants, should be able at least to freely select a movie to watch from a limited list that is provided. Not in this case.
First, the whole entertainment system crashed twice!
(I apologize for not using my own image I took with my phone – the battery died on me and I wisely forgot the USB charger:).
Was that an end? Nope.
Second, when the system finally came back – any selected movie would yield “The selected content is not available at this moment”. Awesome work folks. Just what a client needs.
Good that some people are hacky enough to go into flight information (crappy video with status of the flight) and at that time start zipping channels on the armrest (on the right side). That, surprisingly, was able to flip through the channels where movies were playing in an endless loop. Ha! Some entertainment, ladies and gentlemen.
Moral of the story – quality is just not there. To understand if your software is worth anything, become the client of your own software. Being techy is not enough. UX and usability are as important as the software itself. Bring value and not shame on our profession – that’s one of the things I realize in encounters like this.
PS: Talking about usability – same entertainment system, the volume buttons seemed to be switched. Louder button was on left, and quieter button was on right… weird :)