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An End-to-end Mobile App for Habit Development
Habitate phone screens

Project Overview

Designing a conceptual end-end app, Habitate that helps users build habits and stick to them by helping them make it a part of their routine.

My Role

UI/UX Designer
(Sole contributor)


UX Research
UX/UI Design
Usability Testing


80 hours




Dhaval Gandhi
View Prototype

Project Background

It all started with a friend of mine who posted on Facebook inviting friends to join him in cultivating a reading habit. He had by then tried everything, from using numerous habit tracking apps, taking expensive library memberships for motivation, to even buying a kindle for ease of access everywhere.
Cultivating this habit with a group of interested people he thought, would help him finally crack that hard shell!

I checked on him a couple of weeks later to see how he was doing on his new habit.
"Oh That! I gave up! I did read for 2 weeks or so and then life caught up!"

Can you recall the last time you gave an excuse like that?

Thanks to our fast-paced lifestyles, most of us are always struggling to cultivate habits that last for a long time.

How Might We help users develop a habit while making it part of their daily routine, keeping the user motivated, and making the process simple, fun, and interactive?

Come with me on this journey as I find the solution to this problem!

My Design Process

1 Empathize

Secondary Research
User Interview

2 Define

User Persona
Empathy Map
Project Goals
Product Feature Roadmap
Information Architecture

3 Ideate

UI Kit
Hi-Fidelity Design

4 Prototype

Hi-Fidelity Prototype

5 Test

Usability Testing
Priority Revisions


To better understand how to solve the problem, we need to understand our users and delve deeper into their behavior. Conducting research will help us understand the emotional, social, and irrational drivers that affect the way our users behave.

To gain the most out of this phase, a clear research plan was created.

The Research plan has research goals, questions, participants, methodologies and respective timeline.

Secondary Research

Research on habit formation has shown that behavior is likely to become habitual when it is frequently and consistently performed in the same context. Habit strength increases steeply at first, and then levels off.

According to a recent study at Stockholm University, below are the statistics for 2021 of people who made new year resolutions.

  • More than 70% of the participants reported one or more resolutions falling into the “physical health” category.
  • The second largest category was "self-improvement" (10%), followed by “psychological health” (5%).
  • More than 48% of them started officially since quarantine.
  • 35% of participants who failed their New Year’s Resolutions said they had unrealistic goals.
  • 33% of participants who failed didn’t keep track of their progress.
  • 23% forgot about their resolutions.
  • About one in 10 people who failed said they made too many resolutions.
  • According to various studies, it takes 21 days to fully form a new habit, as 21 days is the time required for new neuropathways to be fully formed in your brain.

User Interviews

To dig deeper into the research and to get more insights on user's persepective I conducted 1-1 interviews.
I created an User Inteview Guide to help me facilitate the user interview process.


2 Female and 3 Male
were interviewed


Age Range
60% of participants
were under the age of 30


Across the globe


Software professional

User Needs

  • Users need an intuitive interface that enables them to track all habits and subtasks over a period of time.
  • Users need notifications when the habit task is due.
  • Users need a simpler UI and UX experience to track habits.
  • Users need smaller goals everyday to build and sustain a new habit.
  • Users needs guidance to sustain a habit once formed.
  • Users need a better visualization on their progress to stay motivated.

User Pains

  • Users found they had to undergo multiple clicks and through multiple screens to track a new habit.
  • The existence of an uncertain schedule interferes with the habits.
  • Time was the biggest barrier when trying to form a new habit.
  • Users were discouraged when their progress was not tracked or information tracked was insufficient.
  • The users do not get notifications when the habit is due.
  • The users found it difficult to sustain the habit after few days as motivation wears off.

Key Insights

  • For 75% of the users, top reason for breaking a habit, was forgetting to do it.
  • Users had more success of forming a new habit when done with a friend or in a group.
  • Users had more success in forming a new habit when the tasks lasted less than 30 minutes on an average in a day.
  • The habits that became a part of the daily or regular routine were more sustainable.
  • Users felt more motivated when they saw they had achieved a habit streak (regular for a number of days consistently).
  • Starting with smaller tasks and goals helped 80% of the users form the habit and sustain it after 21 days.
  • Planning for alternate plan of action when schedule goes haywire helped stay in control of the habit.
  • 90% of the users used habit trackers to feel motivated to form and maintain a habit.
  • Reminders for habit tasks were the most important feature they used the apps for.
  • Rewards and sharing achievement badges with friends motivated 90% of the users.
  • All of the users complained of not having a simpler UI/UX flow for habit tracking.
  • Exercise, Healthy eating and learning something new were the top habit forming categories.


Now that we have got some key insights from our research phase, we need to understand who is that we are designing for? What our goals will be?

With the insights achieved from the research phase, I created an empathy map & a User Persona to highlight the behaviors, goals, frustrations, and motivations of the user

User Persona

Meet Cathy, a 28-year-old manager from Seattle. She is a creative person who doesn't shy away from taking risks. She loves learning something new every day and believes in improving herself, one day at a time.

User persona

Empathy Map

With a clear persona in mind, I dug deeper to understand what Cathy would think, how she would behave, and what triggers her pains, gains, and habit-related behaviors.

Empathy map

Project Goals

Our next step is to figure out the project goals to chalk out our next steps ahead. For a product to succeed, the business and user goals need to go hand in hand.

Below pictorial representation shows us the user goals (our main hero here!), business goals (we need to create a product that sustains), and technical goals (providing a seamless experience).

Project goals

Product Feature Roadmap

The next step is to chalk out a list of product features to create a comprehensive product roadmap. The features are sorted into four categories, including Must-have (P1), Nice-to-Have (P2), Delightful (P3), and Can-wait (P4) features.

The 'feature matrix quadrant' depicts the cost and impact of a particular feature. The High-impact and low-cost features are a must-have, whereas High-cost and low-impact are to be avoided. The other features are balanced, aligning with our project goals.

Product roadmap

Information Architecture

Our last task for the define stage is to create an information architecture. This is an important step in our process. A detailed Information Architecture will help us visualize the hierarchy and organization of information in our product.

Information Architecture for On Boarding

Onboarding Information Architecture

Information Architecture for Performing a habit

Do habit Information Architecture



I kickstarted the ideate stage by sketching my ideas on an iPad before proceeding to create low-fidelity Screens.

Sketching enables me to give my ideas a concrete shape before I proceed to digitize them. I iterated before zeroing in on what fits my goals and research best. Below are the final sketches.

Sketches for onboarding

Onboarding sketches

Sketches for performing a habit

Sketches for performing habit


Based on the sketches, I created mid-fidelity screens to better define the hierarchy, visual depiction and styles.

Wireframes for onboarding

Onboarding Wireframes

Wireframes for performing a habit

Performing habit Wireframes

You can have a look at all the wireframes here


UI Kit

Before we move on to create Hi-Fidelity screens, we created a UI Kit. The UI Kit contains the logo, color palette, typography, and all the UI Elements used. This kit provides a reference for future designs and is handy in collaboration with the design and development team.

Habitate UI kit

Hi-Fidelity Screens

After defining the UI kit, I created the Hi-Fidelity designs. Below you can see the screens for onboarding and performing a habit flow.

Onboarding Screens

Hi Fidelity screens for onboarding

Performing a habit screens

Hi Fidelity screens for performing a habit

You can have a look at all the Hi-Fidelity Screens here


Below you can watch a quick prototype preview of the onboarding and performing-a-habit flows.


Performing a habit

Skipping a habit


Usability Testing

To test if our approach to the problems we defined to solve is right, I created a Usability Test Plan and conducted usability testing with our working prototype.


2 Female and 4 Male


Age Range
60% of participants
were under the age of 25




Quality Tester
Software Professional

Each participant was asked to imagine a hypothetical scenario and perform related tasks. The testing was conducted via remote and in-person.

Tasks to perform

As someone who wants to adopt a habit but is not sure where to start, you have stumbled upon the Habitate App.

Task 1: To onboard the app as a new user and create your first habit.

Task 2: As an existing user, perform a habit scheduled for the day.

Task 3: As an existing user, try to skip a habit scheduled for the day.

Test Findings


  • All participants found the app simple and easy to navigate.
  • All participants felt the app had a very fun outlook.
  • All participants felt the app was very interactive and the experience personalized.
  • All participants were able to onboard successfully and found the process simple.
  • 5/6 of participants felt the feedback pop-ups were very motivating and would increase the chances of performing the habit every day.
  • 5/6 of participants opted for habit stacking and felt the notifications of stacking habits would really help habits become a part of their routine.
  • All participants loved the group option. They felt it would help their habit journey be both fun and motivating.
  • All participants really loved the idea of having an alternate action plan in case of skipping the habit. They felt it would eliminate the negative feeling attached to skipping the habit.

Pain Points

  • 2/6 of participants felt they would have liked to know what the information they share during habit stacking will be used for.
  • 3/6 of participants felt it would be nice to know what to expect during the 21-day challenges in general.
  • 2/6 of participants felt the habits for the day were not highlighted on the homepage from the trending challenges section.
  • 2/6 of participants felt there should be an option to skip the timer in case of certain activities.

Opportunities for improvements

  • Place a text on the habit stacking page, to explain to the user how the information is being used.
  • During the onboarding process mention that the user will be required to perform given activities for the day during the 21-day challenge period.
  • Highlight the habits for the day section, maintaining the coherence between it and the trending habits.
  • Provide an option to skip the timer during an activity.

Priority Revisions

Prioritizing the suggestions, pain points, and patterns observed from participants, the following changes were made.

01 - Educate users on Habit stacking page

Educate users about usage of the information collected on habit stacking page.

Priority revision for educating users about habit stacking

02 - Highlight daily habits on homepage

Create sections of daily habits and other personalized explore options to show clear separation.

Priority revision for highting daily habits

03 - Provide an option to skip timer

Provide an option for the user to go to next activity without using the timer.

Priority revision to skip timer

04 - Intimate the user on what to expect in the 21-day challenge

Intimate the user on what to expect during the 21-day challenge in the onboarding process.

Priority revision to inform user about expectation from 21 day challenge


Key Learnings

Analyzing the usability test results, I believe the approach we used to solve the problems was right.

I was able to design an end-end mobile flow for a user who wants to form a habit and sustain it.

I hope you enjoyed learning about this project during this process. Please feel free to leave feedback and connect with me anytime.

Next Steps

My next step is to explore the nice-to-have features to knock off the competition in the market and hook our users in coming back for more.

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