I’m a fan of the singer Taeyeon (태연) from Girls’ Generation and on occasion I find myself on websites where her fans have posted photos that they’ve taken of her at airports, media events, etc. She actually has quite a following as it seems like there are several dedicated people who just (voluntarily) follow her around. I guess they are the equivalent of paparazzi but they seem nicer about it.
Anyways, instead of visiting all of those sites, or other fan sites on my computer, I wanted an experience on my phone similar to what I can do with Instagram; which is the ability to just open an app when I’m bored and scroll through photos. I decided to build one, and I called it Always Taeyeon
The concept of Always Taeyeon is a “firehose of HD photos, updated automatically”. Basically, I used public APIs to grab the latest high resolution photos, and then display them in the app. I also wanted to make a rich photographic experience. For example: everything is edge-to-edge, the are minimal distractions (a menu button appears when you scroll), and the menu is real-time blur of the photo you’re looking at.
The second thing I wanted to do was to use as little text as possible. My thinking was that the target audience wouldn’t actually be English speaking people, but people in Asia (Korean, Chinese, Japanese, etc). Unfortunately, it’s hard to get away from using some English. Here are some screens where I had to use English
For the first screen, I had to convey that you could swipe left for more photos. In English, it’s easy to explain; but I also added a little animation if you stay on the screen which would swipe 40% of the screen and then animate back. Hopefully users will get that hint! I also embedded photos into my notifications to help explain to the user that there are new photos.
The app is pretty small so far, but it’s something I’m interested in (and hopefully some people around the world are), so I might keep working on it for awhile (unlike some of my other apps)