Street-level interaction designed by Ideo is the focal point of BBCi’s high-concept London studio, unveiled last Friday at the broadcaster’s historic Bush House home.
Five large windows on the Aldwych-located building’s north east wing now act as transparent screens, allowing pedestrians to watch and listen to ‘live chats’ with celebrities and see the BBCi team in action.
Touch-screen and SMS installations, devised by Ideo, enable viewers on the street to try out BBCi interactive services and contribute questions to interviews.
The BBCi premises, designed by Auckett Europe are divided into four sections: a live chat studio, an interactive TV area, the interactive operations area (where BBCi staff monitor output) and a creative space for brainstorming ideas.
According to BBC director of new media Ashley Highfield, ‘We wanted to create a space that would let passers-by feel part of the buzz here at BBCi and at the same time give our staff a creative and highly innovative environment in which to work. By actually encouraging pedestrians to watch and join in as content is made, they can really get to understand what goes on inside.’
Ideo project leader Maura Shea says the consultancy’s brief was to help ‘conceive the space as an interaction point with the public, using the building as an interface’.
The Ideo team included architect Fred Dust and interaction designers Andrew Hirniak and Richard Turnnidge.