ROKU research TV remote controls in new markets

Jesus Mancilla, Senior UX Researcher at Roku, talks to Paul Blunden about a recent project. In the interview Jesus describes how the preparation by the UX24/7 team helped make the project a success.

Interview transcript ROKU, Jesus Mancilla.

Paul Blunden: hi I’m Paul Blunden founder and CEO of UX247 and today I’m going to be speaking with one of our customers about a successful project we delivered for them.

Hi Jesus, great to see you and look for the benefits of people watching could ask you do introduce yourself tell me what you do and what role you played at UK at Roku.

Jesus Mancilla: Hi yes I am a senior ux researcher at Roku they the Le researcher for players which is or the include the remote the streaming boxes and streaming stick and I also do research for customer support which involves for both the website and the C

Paul Blunden: it’s a pretty involved role from the sound of it

Jesus Mancilla: yes it is pretty busy and but it’s pretty interesting and like the differences between like working with the digital and physical experiences

Paul Blunden: well look um we first worked with you last year on a really interesting project can you uh sort of tell me about what the problem was you were trying to overcome?

Jesus Mancilla:  yeah for sure it is uh this project was uh is a was a two year long project that we started because we were evaluating every single one of the remotes for example these are two of the remotes that we have in the US from more basic one is this little guy here which is uh the one with more capabilities and hands free handsfree and more and more features to now that we wanted to move intern well we have international remotes it was the turn for this big guy right here which is has the tpad which is the one that we have in the UK we wanted to evaluate it and but we thought it would be better we we’ll have a better understanding of our users if some local with a better grasp of the of the users in the market will be that’s why we reach out to you guys and this was part since this was part of the general evaluation that we were doing we already have a standardized test was also flexible enough as you saw like remotes have different feature sets and like so that’s why we wanted to reach out to you

Paul Blunden: okay and why did you uh select us, what was the thing that sort of sent you our way?

Jesus Mancilla: yes so this was a this was a decision that that was made originally also with the help with the international research I me I as the players research I collabor with International and she already did had did a little bit of digging with the multiple vendors that we that we can call and the like show oh we have vendor and after reviewing after evaluating we said oh let’s talk with them and uh I was delightful to talking with you guys you made it very easy it was great uh this was a project that involved not only players but International and Roku TV which is just another division actually the reason the REM and it was something the main thing that caught my eye really appreciate from you guys was how you made it easier for me I know it was a lot of moving pieces but you made it very easy to get everything together and how you prompted how you asked to trying to get a better grasp and to better understanding of what we needed that made it that was very valuable for me that you were so eager or interested or invested on this really spoke very lovely to me

Paul Blunden: that’s uh really lovely to hear and you alluded to actually how the project was running there as well and I remember it was a very complicated project with a lot of moving parts and our Research Ops team always work very hard to make sure that uh it come it seems simple for the for the client perhaps you could tell speak a bit more about what actually the project was all about then and what happened and how it ran from your perspective?

Jesus Mancilla:  yes of course it was it was it was a very complicated and large project we as you mentioned we tried to make it easy but it is just so many moving pieces and we had to work with multiple divisions here Roku and trying to buy in trying to include not only or remote but also the competitors to bet to get the best the most we can most information that we can and one of the things that you Lo at is like yes you work very hard to make it look easy for us and it was not until I flew there and during the sessions that was the every session that I realized how much work did like it was because as I mentioned we were testing not only this guy but we were also testing uh competitor remote over there and during the conversation that we had like the different tests that we have maybe one test we perform better and because the competitor doesn’t have something so it like it will not match up or vice versa something that competitor did pretty well but we didn’t that we didn’t have so there was a lot of and again from my perspective everything was smoothly everything was great we just met up and you did the you did the you give the feedback to the guy that I did and now going there and realizing oh this is a lot they were a lot a lot of moving pieces one of the reasons we’re doing so that was fantastic I really value and appreciate all the leg work all the everything that you did before starting and now being there after session sorry after each session you were asking like what feedback do you have what do you think should we prompt this should we ask this would you like to change anything or like what do you think of this questions and stuff like that or would you have more questions so that was that was phenomenal right I really appreciate it h really uh as I as we were going through the sessions was like yes are getting the best results possible like the best result that we can so that uh that part like first the pre-work and now during the sessions how we work together doing this you make things very smoothly for us.

Paul Blunden: fantastic okay well a glowing reference which is was great to hear and um and what would the results ultimately I mean it’s it’s obviously a long project are there results yet?

Jesus Mancilla: yeah sure um yeah it was well this is hardware things think a long time a long time process a long change but things that the team worked so hard on having everything standardized it was part of the frame word that we were in sync that that everything was worked smoothly and smooth out we were able to transfer the knowledge from the UK remote to the rest of the Roes meaning that because now we have a large enough Corpus of information since this had been done through the years and with multiple studies with more with multiple remotes we now have enough data to make a actually statistical significant difference they has to like weight uh sturdiness feeling and reachability and all these things so it has been a great project meaning that in the sense that we were able to say we were able to significantly influence the well the Next Generation remote that will be launched I remember correctly uh spring 2024 don’t put me on that it can change but it include knowledge and decisions were made based on the result on the results of the study because of the cumulative way that we have been working with and which was very important for us to keep consistency and now that that we have that extra information especially well I say the community way because you know like PN being the actors they will say oh well he only one study he a small sample and the like but now that we have additional test additional information we are able to say no this is actually statistical significance is not only one remote in the US but it’s also in the UK and it’s also with remote x y z and that made a huge change even for the UK remote I still have thing that we tested there but we were able to make last minute changes in Hardware time it is like this is will be released or was released for 2023 this year um so well last Mee changes meaning that since takes a year uh decisions they were they were the they were not completely sure about it but they said they work like yeah we would like to change like to make these changes and based on the information that we got from you guys.


Paul Blunden: well it sounds like there was a lot of value out of the project um is there anything else I mean it’s been great hearing actually because we when you’re working in the project and certainly for me watching the team doing it it’s hard to know how it’s gone at times but so it’s been really great hearing that from you is there anything else you’d like to add?

Jesus Mancilla: at all yes well as you can see I’m very happy and I’m very grateful for the partnership that we had because uh you were very flexible you were very Nimble you accomm at a couple things especially because this was as I said was part of large study and this was the framework that I created for this like needed multiple things to be accommodated in a certain way so it was it was great that you were able to work with that to accommodate to say in this in particular for example I’m a my stronger suit but not only I’m a qual researcher but a Quant researcher they wear a bunch of metrics stats that needed to be there so that was that was part of the this like oh we need to make sure that it’s like this this this and this and as we were working on that when you deliver the first report that we had this back and forth and also to be able to get questions from you like oh how do you feel with this how do you commit with that back and forth was very important I appreciate it.

Paul Blunden: well Jesus it’s an absolute pleasure to talk to you and thanks so much for uh for being so open about the project and how it went and what the results were um and we very much hope to be working with you again in the future

Jesus Mancilla: thank you very much

Paul Blunden: well I hope you enjoyed listening to Jesus and learning about the project we did for Roku there were an awful lot of moving Parts in that project but delighted it went so well for him.

If you have a project that you have in mind or a problem you’re trying to solve um in New Markets or your home Market why don’t you get in touch with us you can do that through our website that’s or you can email us or you can find me on LinkedIn and message me there.

I’m Paul Blunden CEO and founder of ux247 and we help Global Brands deliver high performing products and services.

Thanks for watching.