San Diego goes full circle: the world’s first CDMA phone, which we designed for Qualcomm 20 years ago, turned up in ecoATM’s mobile device recycling kiosk.
When Qualcomm decided to develop the first digital CDMA mobile phone, they reached out to DDSTUDIO. We worked together through new approaches to usability, GUI and physical packaging. The reduced component size for its time, especially the battery, came in at half of a brick—50% of the size of competing mobile phones.
You would be surprised what turns up in the ecoATM—some real museum pieces have been discovered. In fact, ecoATM CEO and founder, Mark Bowles, is building a landmark phone shrine with the pieces he finds. Alongside all the iPhone 3’s that get reused, there are many flip phones with salvageable materials for recycling.
A single user may only use the ecoATM once every two years, and therefore the interaction with the machine must be intuitive for all users across all demographics. Our seamless unification of GUI with tactile finance areas encourages a cohesive journey from placing your phone into the tray through collecting the cash or donating it to charity.
We integrated our approach with D&K Engineering, who completed detailed internal mechanism development and contract manufacturing. DDSTUDIO created a vibrant visual brand language, both physical and virtual. The expanded teams were able to exercise control over the integration, with internal complexity allowing external simplicity. Together, we employed design and engineering in the service of customer engagement.
The second-generation ecoATM is an exceptional incorporation of physical product and GUI, guiding the customer through a transaction in record time. The bot guides the user with simple logic linked to entertainment, presenting a far more complex operation than other kiosks at a fun and intuitive level.