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September 30, 2015

Microsoft and the Design Museum take you Inside the Designs

Microsoft has teamed up with the Design Museum in London to inject interactivity into the Designs of the Year Award 2015 exhibit by using the Microsoft Lumia 640 XL, Surface, Windows, Azure, and Power BI.

Take a walk around the Designs of the Year 2015 exhibit in the Design Museum and you’ll see winning designs from categories including architecture, product, digital, graphics, fashion and transport. Winners range from the BMW i8 to vegetables to the largest ocean clean-up in history.

In addition to the carefully curated selection of nominees and winners, you will also be greeted by a large white table fitted with 40 Lumia 640 XLs flanked on either end with Surface tablets.


The Surface screens play an instructional demo showing visitors how to use this interactive space, while the orange Lumia devices beg to be picked up and activated.

Each of the six Design of the Year category winners throughout the exhibit include pedestals with orange tags urging you to “tap here.”


Visitors who walk around the newly enhanced exhibit space with a Lumia in hand and tap the winning designs’ NFC-enabled tags are provided with more information and interactivity. That info includes further background about the product, the materials used, the product’s designers, what the judges thought about the design, and why it was a category winner.

Visitors are invited to “join the debate” by answering questions and giving their opinion of each design. In addition, they’re given feedback as to how many people agreed with their opinion. All of this is pulled together in an engaging and beautifully designed app that enhances the visitor experience.


“A digital experience is a great way for us to share the wealth of information about our exhibits that we cannot usually display due to space limitations,” said Curator Gemma Curtin. “We are also excited that we can encourage a new level of debate with our visitors, understanding their opinions and the level of engagement they have with our exhibits”

Not only does this new technology enhance the guest experience; it also provides valuable data and insights for the Design Museum, such as learning which pieces guests engage with the most and a better understanding of overall guest satisfaction and direct feedback on the exhibit. This information can be then turned into meaningful and more immediate updates for the museum.

Microsoft worked with a development partner, SceneSkope, on this platform and experience completely powered by Microsoft technologies–from Azure and Power BI for the back end and data analytics to Windows, Surface and Lumia to deliver the visitor experience.


“We are excited to be a partner of Microsoft and have used their technologies to create a platform that enables a rich visitor engagement, provides a deep understanding of visitor behaviors and gives real-time feedback to venues” said Iain Marsden SceneSkope CEO. “The platform creates new outreach through our engagement, building a long term conversation between the visitor and venue”.

You are invited to take part in this new experience at the Design Museum, which launched on September 17 and will run to the end of March, 2016.