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The Challenge

Our client wanted to create a revolutionary device which would propel them into unassailable market leadership. They wanted X-plorer™ to be the smallest, lightest and most powerful audio player in the world for museum and gallery tours. The device needed high-quality audio in an elegant, solid state MP3 player that is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and that users can either use a headset or hold the player to their ear and listen through the self-contained speaker. The device needed to cater for a broad range of venues that may require manual control, automatic triggering or in some cases, both.

  • Applied Expertise
  • Research & strategy
  • Human factors
  • Industrial design
  • Packaging
  • Technology development
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Electronic engineering
  • Software engineering
  • Wireless & connected
  • Short run manufacturing
  • Manufacturing processes
  • Supply chain management

The Solution

Our industrial designers, mechanical and electronic engineers worked closely together to conceptualise the device design whilst integrating all the technological aspects. Crucial to this project was the software development that was both embedded and PC based. The software and electronics allowed the device to be reprogrammable and rechargeable on-site via multifunction
charging racks. Also the device had integrated tracking and customer questionnaire capability. Advanced features included infrared triggering and synchronization with audio visual displays. With the MP3 capability and up to 130 hours of high quality, interactive content, the device meet the client requirements.

Benefit to the client

The device was one of the first ever devices to use MP3 technology. It is now the player of choice for institutions such as the
British Museum, The Louvre and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and delivers over 50,000 tours a day, indoors and out, at
venues and cultural sites the world over. The device went on to win industry awards and has been the basis for an entire range of products.

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