Building a Better Health App
Small Planet builds healthcare apps that combine empathy, functionality, and respect.
Small Planet works with hospitals, manufacturers, nonprofits, and major healthcare providers to create successful health apps that engage and inform users. What makes them successful? Respect for the user, a focus on security and privacy, and strong design principles that emphasize usability.
Take a look at what we’ve done, then let’s talk about what we can build or upgrade for you.
Streamlined Appointment Booking
Sometimes a health app’s simplest goals can be the hardest to achieve. Zipper®, an app from Planned Parenthood of Southern New England, needed a greater focus on its core purpose of appointment-setting.
Zipper’s reimagined design streamlines appointment booking and simplifies navigation. Users can see all available appointments at a glance, then arrange an appointment at one of the clinics within minutes.
Relevant content for each particular user is provided along the way. For instance, if the user has booked an appointment for birth control, they’ll see links to information about various birth control methods. Reminders and Add to Calendar are easy opt-ins, but completely at the user’s discretion to protect privacy.
Empathy, trust, and respect are required ingredients when you’re trying to turn a challenging task into an easy and relatively pleasant habit. Small Planet collaborated with the University of North Carolina School of Medicine’s Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders to create Encourage, an app allowing patients to plan daily meals and track their food intake, moods, urges, and behaviors.
Smartphones are ubiquitous, discreet, and provide accurate time stamps — the perfect tool for self-monitoring. Security and HIPAA compliance were high priorities all through design, development, and delivery of an iPhone app for patients, as well as an iPad app for providers.
Encourage enhanced the appeal (and reduced the perceived burden) of self-monitoring, helping patients and providers identify triggers, behavior patterns, recovery trends, and drivers of change.
The more information a user provides, the smarter an app becomes. That idea guided the development of Spot On, a birth control and period tracker powered by Planned Parenthood.
Spot On takes the aggregated data fed into the app by users to predict their cycles more accurately and understand the effects of their menstrual cycles. Through a fun, simple interface, users track their period, symptoms, moods, and activities, as well as a broad range of birth control methods.
We created something a little bit like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, in that the user is in charge of the path they take, but the “story” still has to make sense even when the reader randomly jumps around. The result provides users with a fuller picture of their reproductive health.
Connected Home Devices
Healthy living starts and ends every day with the air that you breathe. The Airmega Smart Air Purifier app gives owners total control of their home or office environment, making clean air a priority at all times.
Through the app, users can remotely activate the Airmega from any location, set the timer, see the status of filters, and receive both indoor and outdoor air quality updates. The WiFi-connected unit senses the indoor air quality while receiving real-time information on outdoor air quality and adjusts the filtration accordingly.
Personalization is now so central to UX design, it’s almost taken for granted. Almost. Some apps still offer the same “one size fits all” experience to everybody. If your health app isn’t changing every day based on user behavior, mapping out a customized journey for that person, something’s wrong.
The ActiveHealth® app, built for a major healthcare provider, includes weekly action plans based on the user’s specific health goals and motivations, plus updates when there is new information about your health. The path that’s created is unique and relevant, giving users a sense of individualized care and advice.