Founded on the frustration of not knowing what to watch or trawling through video content on Youtube, Vimeo and other services, Rheo provides an intuitive way for users to discover videos relevant to their mood, tastes and watching habits. Hydric Media was contracted to port their popular Apple TV app to a responsive web experience, inline with a native iOS app underway internally (now released), and also to update their corporate online website inline with an updated brand direction.
Left: channel menu. Middle: fullscreen playback. Right: coming up next section.
Challenges
The desire to extend their Apple TV app to web was driven by internal business needs to leverage user engagement through sharing of videos from their Apple TV and iOS apps to in turn attract new users via social networks. With this in mind we set the goal to create a video playback experience that retained the elegance of their already released Apple TV app, while feeling as native as possible no matter the device it was opened on. The site also had to support two modes of playback — portrait and landscape.
Above: wireframes for mobile video playback and channel menu.
Solutions
My involvement saw me familiarise myself with their core video discovery experience, and then wireframe initial concepts for mobile and desktop video playback as well as their new corporate website. 
Above: wireframe for the new Rheo.tv corporate home page.
Collaborating with visual design and engineering staff, we ensured our solution adhered to a robust set of layout rules to facilitate compatibility across various devices, browsers and screen resolutions. We also validated some non-standard device-specific functionalities such as in-line autoplay of video on iOS Safari and a landscape-responsive player that switched to a fullscreen layout automatically on device rotation.
Above: final designs for mobile video playback and fullscreen layout.
Rheo launched their web player alongside the release of their iOS app in 2017. Follow the link below to start watching.
Above, wireframes for desktop video playback. Below, final designs for desktop video playback, including fullscreen layouts.
Team
Client — Rheo
Agency — Hydric Media
Platform — Web
Product Lead — Tom Knox
Visual Designer — Jack Murphy
Lead Web Developer — Simon Hales
Project Manager — James Gauci
Featured in