The Design Journey of a Remote Control

The Design Journey of a Remote Control

Original Intent

As a team with drone know-how under our belts, we're intimately familiar with advanced remote control. That sparked the idea to put that experience towards lawn care - solving big hassles for folks unable to mow in crummy weather or due to health reasons. In a way, this gadget works similar to flying a drone, we're just applying the tech to grass-cutting!

Similar to drone flight controllers battling air disturbances, we engineered an ingenious "mower controller" system to overcome variables like moisture and uneven terrain.

On the autonomous driving front, we brainstorm how to define and implement semi-autonomous and fully autonomous mowing, with aspirational auto-drive ratings akin to L0, L1, and L2 cars. Mainly we wanted to make mowing less of a chore by enabling an auto-pilot type feature to ease all that stick maneuvering.

Design Journey

Our initial remote concept evoked rugged landscaping tools with industrial styling and prominent handles for control and safety. But honestly, it looked rather clunky.

We then progressed to the two red models, which showcase refinements edging closer to the final form. Shifting away from the lifted side handles, we adopted the proven contour-hugging grip of traditional remote controls for superior comfort.

Another key enhancement sinks the control sticks into recessed wells. This retains the familiar tactile experience consumers expect, while safeguarding against accidental bumps. Our pioneering sunken design innovation acts like a protective barrier around the key controls. For instance, if the remote is dropped, the recessed well helps cushion against potential damage or inadvertent joystick triggers.

Version four marked a pivotal leap - integrating a screen after initially lacking one.

The subsequent iterations mainly focused on optimizing user experience, including adjusting the screen size and improving the ergonomics of the grip design to better fit the human hand. The areas on the remote control where the palm grips have been shaped into curved arcs, making it more comfortable to hold. The grip areas for the thumb pad and index finger have also been modified, with attention paid to these small details in order to enhance the overall user experience when operating the remote control.

Another small design is the flower-shaped rocker, which has better anti-slip ability and high control accuracy.

One of the details we implemented is the dust-proof and waterproof design of the sunken rocker. This is also an innovative and unique design. You can notice that it is a rocker wrapped in silicone, which improves the overall waterproof and dust-proof of the remote control.

This attention toward both ergonomic design and functional protections exemplifies our design ethos evolving toward the optimal user experience. Core decisions balance user-friendly aesthetics, real-world robustness, and intuitive interactions harmonizing person and machine.

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