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April 30, 2010

The final days – Design by Community

5. Week-round-upLONDON, England – Little did we think when we embarked on this adventure that we’d gather more than 72,000 votes for Design by Community. Thanks to your continued dedication – over 2,500 votes were received this week – Design by Community is much more than we could ever have hoped or expected. Now, it’s over to the designers to use the information you’ve submitted to inform what they suggest should be the three sketches you’ll have to vote on. We’re expecting to get the sketches back in the next couple of weeks, meanwhile, there’s still one whole weekend for you to submit your final votes for enhancements.

We’ll be keeping voting open until Tuesday, but for now let’s have a recap on where we’ve come from. One of the things that has struck me throughout this process, is your continuing desire to make what I would deem to be quite sensible suggestions. Given the option of an 18-megapixel camera, the majority of you voted for an 8-megapixel option instead. When given the chance to vote for a super-slim device, the sensibility of the hive mind struck once more and opted for something that would actually be able to pack in a decent amount of tech.

What we’ve ended up with is a device with a 4-inch capacitive screen, some basic buttons on the outside and all packed into a moderately sized – big enough to handle the innards, yet small and compact enough to be useable – device (60 x 110 x 6-10mm, since you ask).

It’ll be interesting to see what the design team come up with for the materials. How they’ll mix soft touch and aluminium could well be challenging. Whilst Nokia devices are long held up for their durability, the Design by Community vote went for “super strength”. That’ll also be an interesting one to explore.

But it isn’t just the votes which have (been) counted for this project. The myriad feedback and suggestions you’ve delivered through the comments have been immense. We’ve pooled the most relevant ones into a briefing document, along with the vote results, for the design team to mull over. It’s this kind of insight, we hope, which will help give them a clearer picture as to what it is you want from a concept device.

So what’s next? Well, the design folks are now sharpening their pencils to come up with some concept sketches. Once they’re ready, we’ll be presenting them to you here on Conversations so we can capture your vote. Yep, you’ll have three to choose from and it’ll be up to you to decide which one to go for. Once that’s complete, we’ll be heading back to the design team to have the concept sketches turned into renders. This will give us as close a picture as we can get as to what the final concept device will look like. We should be able to see still images of the device, fly-over videos and a vision of what it looks like from every angle.

So that only leaves one thing. What are we going to call it? Next week we’ll be scooping up the 100s of name suggestions already made and put them into some kind of order so once again you can decide. We haven’t yet worked out how we’re going to do it, but trust us, we will. Check back next week to take part in the great naming competition.