• Let Users "Design" Their Own Refrigerator

    Haier TS "new life" refrigerator user research & conceptual design

  • Home Life
  • Home Life

Background + Challenge

  • In 1984, Haier made a Chinese refrigerator by introducing a German refrigerator production line, filling the gap in domestic refrigerators. Today, Haier has grown to become one of the world's largest and most advanced refrigerator manufacturers. Since its inception, providing users with the best service and constantly refreshing the user experience has always been the inexhaustible driving force for Haier to create new wins.

    On the occasion of the first generation of TS "New Life" refrigerators, Haier hopes that ISAR can unearth the needs of TS "new life" iterative refrigerators in appearance, CMF, function, size, purchase channels, etc. The crowd opportunity points and related requirements are derived from the iterative design direction and conceptual design. That is, let the user "choose" their own refrigerator and let the user "design" their own refrigerator.

Insight + Strategy

  • We have noticed that many refrigerator designs on the market do not take into account the actual storage needs of users. Users in different regions, family structures, and food preferences have many differences in the demand for refrigerators. How to design a refrigerator that can satisfy different types of users? ISAR set out to design a series of methods and processes to find the answer:

    1. Desktop Research & Online Questionnaire Understand background information about the industry and the crowd. Through the online questionnaire to recruit users, we will make a preliminary understanding of the target users' life and product usage habits, and sort out the main dimensions of subsequent research.

    2. Life Diary Study From the users in the previous stage questionnaires, 42 users from Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, and Xi'an, including renting houses and own houses, and different family forms, participated in the refrigerator life diary, and initially tapped the users. Pain points and potential needs.

    3. Home Interview We conduct home interviews with users who participated in the life diary in the previous stage, and output targeted audience images, needs and iterative design directions and opportunities through qualitative and deep interviews.

    4. Conceptual Design We design the product concept through the design direction and opportunity points of the previous stage output, and present it by hand-drawn form.

    5. Group Test In the form of focus groups, users are invited to conduct acceptance tests and group discussions to further verify and clarify user acceptance and preferences, and collect user suggestions to produce final iterative design recommendations.

Outcome + Outlook

  • After in-depth exploration of the above series of methods, we determined that the target population of Haier TS “new life” series refrigerator products is the people born in 85s and 90s. They are a group of people who have individuality, self-awareness, adhere to their own views and ideas, and values are diversified and personalized. Based on this, we give three iteration directions:

  • With active reminder function
  • Self-cleaning indoor wall
  • Better looking, easy to use freezer drawer
  • Easy access to special items


Lazy People
  • Separable "control screen"
  • Breaking the conventional fruit and vegetable boxes
  • and shelves
  • More cold storage areas with varying possibilities
  • Variable temperature zone in the freezer


My Own Way
  • Freely combined reminder refrigerator stickers as a local highlight
  • Easy to adjust bottle holder and fruit and vegetable box space
  • Pull-out shelf for easy access to rear items
  • Changeable freezing area, which can directly store dumplings and easy to store ice cream


Changes As You Like