Internet of Things – Design Studio

It’s hard to imagine your life without a smartphone in your hand. We rely on them for everything from communication, information, entertainment and social interactions. This course explores the impact of the Internet on everyday products. This emerging platform called the Internet of Things – wherein billions and trillions of devices communicating with each other and “the cloud” – could enable unprecedented, innovative products and services. Industrial design will lead the development of smart objects and this course will explore the design of products for the home of the future.


What we did

  • Design research
  • Problem assessment tool creation
  • Problem determination
  • Design brief
  • Concept development
  • Ideation
  • Prototyping and testing
  • Presentation

Design process

The process begins with student research as they explore ideas for connected devices. Each student identifies a problem of their interest and asseses how the problem might be solved with a connected device. Topics range from distracted driving and quality of sleep to the challenges of aging in place and posture improvement.

Sketch prototypes and Key Insights

Students create multiple rounds of prototypes of their design and begin testing their solutions and recording the results of their learnings. This period is iterative and students are expected to make and draw (by hand and in CAD) in multiple rounds of form finding and function refinement. UX/UI is a large part of the project and needs to be in development simultaneously with the physical product.

Problem Assessment Tool

The students create a self assessment tool to judge the feasibility and validity of their chosen topics. The tool is used to analyze and consider all the factors that contribute to their underlying problem including number of people effected, current solutions and market size. This process leads them to innovative connected solutions to their problems.