Telephone by babyTEL

Social VoIP desktop application interface
Montreal, 2010

The softphone application, simply called Telephone by babyTEL, includes features like instant messaging (chat), recording, sending and listening to audio messages and of course making phone calls. It is met to be an all-in-one communication tools integrated into Social Media community like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, dating sites and other organized group as online marketplace like it is based on the contact list pre-populated with all of the user’s contacts within the social network.

Telephone was first integrated to Facebook, using their API, to test user response to the application. One important thing to note here, is that when the project started in 2008, Facebook didn’t have the instant messaging function yet.

This is the revamped version of the previous eggphone. After gathering insights from user testing, we realized the eggphone “egg” shape and background images made user feel like the application was more of a toy for kids then a useful communication tool.

The re-design of the Java-based application shows a more mature look & feel, and one of the main ideas behind the user-experience (UX) was to keep the app’s main menu bar on top of all other windows (similar to a widget) on the user’s computer. This vertical menu bar only displays the featured icons and can also be “docked” on either side of the screen, therefore enabling users to leave the app constantly opened and available to receive calls at all times.

Telephone is a R&D project develop by an amazing team at babyTEL Inc., which consists of:
Talia Dorsey, project manager
Rajeev Ramtuhol, PHP programmer
Pierre St-Germain, Java programmer
and myself, user-interface and user-experience.

  • Vertical menu bar showing application main features: Audio message, Calling, IM, Contacts list, History and Settings.
  • Audio message let users record a message and post it on there wall, a friend's wall or on a fan page.
  • The contact list is pre-populated with the user friends on Facebook, they can call, chat or send audio message from that single list.
  • Telephone landing page on Facebook. See first interface proposal below.
  • Proposal with transparency : Vertical main menu.
  • Recording voice message panel.
  • Contact list panel.
  • Calling panel.
  • Proposal for branded interface : Collapsed view of the voice message recorder.
  • Contact list.
  • Calling panel.
  • Instant messaging drawer.
  • Dial pad drawer.