Morph Customisable Remote

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  • 2018

  • Next Gen

Designed By:

  • Robert Oliveira

Commissioned By:

Robert Oliveira

Designed In:

Australia

Morph is a design project focused on reimaging mass customisation by showing that; it is possible to provide systemised customisation (in a functionally focused manner) using existing technology, and production methods to create a more valued product. This was demonstrated by applying functional customisation to an everyday product (remote control).


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  • Morph started as a project to counter the hyper consumptive loop fuelled by years of mass production in which; novel goods that often fulfil wants not current or foreseeable needs are purchased. As these novelties wear off consumers feel dissatisfied with the purchase and buy an updated product to replace it. The result is an escalation of waste as products with a linear lifespan are discarded to encourage a circular economy. This lead to the following brief: How do we revive an attachment to products, lost by years of continued habitual discarding, while retaining the benefits of current production methods?

  • Through research, customisation was identified as a means of heightening user attachment to products, and an opportunity to embody the overarching concept became visible in gaming and entertainment devices. The result was a focus on creating a common input method that allowed for flexibility, between various entertainment devices, applications and systems. Morph does this by allowing flexible modification of its form, buttons position, size, shape, colour, and function. This allows multiple users to personalise an intuitive interaction with, and transition between, multiple entertainment platforms. The result is a product utilising functional customisation and current production methods to heighten user attachment.

  • Morph focuses on enhancing the bond between human and object to facilitate change in social values around unconscious, wasteful user habits. It was important to achieve this within the bounds of current production methods and technology to maintain commercial viability, and avoid the stigma that a sustainable product is a compromised product. This balance fosters the creation of a premium product, which incorporates customisation, therefore heightening attachment and a desire to retain the product for a longer period of time. Morph is a step in changing expectations about the kinds of products a more sustainable future could include.

  • As a design project Morph stands for a broader way of redefining products once thought too complex for customisation. It redefines the bounds of what and how customisation is applied to by moving away from simple cosmetic forms, and into a level of customisation that effects interaction and usability. Morph also challenges the role of the designers by moving away from the focus of completely defining a product, and into the realm of determining the appropriate levels of customisation. This involves designers setting the flexible elements of a product, and their range, to balance usable constraints with intuitive flexibility. An important part of this is providing users with adequate information about their selections, to create a meaningful, personal and intuitive interaction with the product. Morph does this by pairing sight and touch base feedback to inform users about their configurations, while allowing for ongoing customisation throughout its life. The result is a product that retains its relevance over a longer period of time because of its adaptability, making it less likely to be discarded. Morph demonstrates the importance of designing in functional customisation, while delivering a premium product, to shift preconceptions about sustainable products and foster a more sustainable ethos.