I conducted interviews among several people that I consider apart of my target audience, large families, and a family of 2, I found that there is not one app that caters to everyone, therefore the organization is done through several different applications:

1

Google Calendar

A calendar where users can open events and invite other people, even for a weekly routine like an after-school class. This app is a bit formal.

What is missing:

  • Shared reminders – it is not possible to add more people to a created calendar reminder. Example: There is a package in the mail that needs to be collected and it is close to Yoav's work.
     

  • Correspondence - it is not possible to chat under an event from the calendar. Example: on Monday we're going to visit Grandma and I sent the event to the calendar of all family members. The child has a test the next day and he prefers to postpone the visit until after the test. Now you have to try to schedule a different date that suits everyone.
     

  • assigned tasks - cannot be forwarded directly from the calendar. Example: My calendar has an event for a class for the kid that repeats every Wednesday. This Wednesday I will not be able to take him and I will have to ask family members to replace me. At this point, I would probably ask in a disorganized way in a Whatsapp group chat.

2

Whatsapp

Family communication group. Every family has a group in Whatsapp, where you can write messages, share files, photos, voice messages, location, etc.

What is missing:

  • Tracking - A task I wrote in a group cannot be tracked; messages are lost within the conversation. Example: This Wednesday, I will not be able to take my kid to the after-school class and so I ask someone to replace me. The oldest kid has confirmed he will do it, but it is impossible to track whether the task is being carried out.
     

  • Orientation - Text messages are organized only by timeline and are difficult to find. Example: I wrote to family members that on Saturday I am organizing lunch. I will have to look for confirmations that are scattered within the group chat.
     

  • Reminders - No reminders for events or tasks set in the group chat. Example: Saturday is approaching and also a lunch I am organizing for the family. Whatsapp will not remember the event so I will have to verify by sending a message in the group chat.
     

  • Organization - I would love to have an option to click on one of the group members and get another option that gives only the messages from that member in the group chat. Sometimes I look for something that one of the group members wrote and searching for keywords doesn't always help and then one just has to scroll and scroll.

3

Google Family Link

An app that oversees the kids. Hours spent on the phone, blocking apps, or tracking location.

An app that works well for what it does. To use it you have to create a Google Account for your child.

4

Apps for shared lists

There are many of them and all of them are used for one person and not a group

The result is that none of them can cater to all needs. Each of the apps depends on other apps to complete tasks. For a family group, there is almost no flow that starts and ends with the same app.​

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© Shelly Dalal 2019

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