There have been countless question and answer apps over the years, yet Poutsch provides a new twist, creating a social network out of incredibly simple questions and answers. In contrast to Quora, which is focused on long-form answers, and a single person being correct, Poutsch focuses on polls.
You can follow other users as well as tags that help categorize the questions. In this article, I’ll provide an in depth product teardown, exposing the various features as well as break apart some of the user experience to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
A Product Teardown
On-boarding the user
From the onset we notice that the product prioritizes users to connect with Facebook or Twitter. This is obviously due to the company’s desire to have outbound messages through social channels, the reason the product showed up on our radar in the first place. In order to capture those who don’t want to use traditional social logins, Poutsch also includes an email subscription form.
Unfortunately due to bugs with the current version of Poutsch I’m unable to show you that flow anymore as it won’t let me create a new account!
Getting the user to the core experience
Based on the existing flow of the app, Poutsch prioritizes three activities: following other users, responding to questions, and creating questions. This is a pretty standard flow for most social applications: encourage the user to subscribe to channels that will generate content, and in turn, additional engagement.
Poutsch is pretty smart in this system, forcing all users to follow the primary Poutsch account even if the user chooses not to follow anybody (just as I did the first time around). This means all users will still experience what the app is about.
The core experience
So what is the core experience? As our product video below demonstrates, it’s all about browsing through and creating new questions for users in the app. Whether you want to ask your friends on Twitter or Facebook (which I accidentally did during the walk through), or just ask users on Poutsch, it’s quick and easy to create a question.
Overall the app has pretty design, yet navigating can occasionally become awkward. Here’s a list of those tiny details:
- _A “unique” sideswipe menu - The team behind Poutsch opted to provide a somewhat unique twist on what has become a common interface element: the sideswipe menu. In contrast to most, which state in plain text what the menu options are, this menu decides to rely on icons. If you want to read the description of what the icons mean however, you’ll have to pull out the menu further. To be honest, I’m not really a fan of this approach. While it looks pretty, I had no idea what the icons meant initially, and if you weren’t dissecting the app, there’s a good chance that you’d miss the fact that you can pull out the menu further.- Table rows/cells - One non-standard aspect of the main activities page was the fact that when you click on a person’s face it brings you to a person’s profile. This felt really strange as I would accidentally end up on the wrong screen.- Question page - Additionally, once you end up on the question page, the person who asked the question is buried above the navigation bar. I’m sure this was intended to prioritize having the user answer the question, but it seems odd to not present at least some form of credit to the question creator up front an center.
As I say in the video below, it’s not clear that this product will be a huge success unless they switch to some form of enterprise polling product. Those are the only polling products that I’ve ever seen succeed. Check out our product teardown video below and let us know your thoughts on Twitter.