interaction design

Tongue

overview

Tongue is a bicycle saddle made from uni-directional carbon with a deployable fender that prevents rear-wheel bike spray. The fender slides inside a track on the saddle's shell, underneath a thin layer of gel and wrapped in polyester—all designed to allow bike messengers to ride for long hours in comfort and with convenience.

role

Product Designer

responsibilities

Surveys
Interaction design
Prototyping
Packaging
Brand story
Pitch

Team

Gustav Ole Dyrhauge
Tzu-Ching Lin
Zihan Chen

problem

No bicycle fender meets all of the preferences of a bike messenger

Bike messengers express themselves through the aesthetics of their bikes, which they carefully curate. No fender speaks the same physical or visual language as many of these aesthetic and mechanical expressions.

Why the problem exists

Lack of early integration

User research

Bike messengers in New York City

The team consulted bike messengers via facebook groups and online forums to form an aggregate user persona. We also contacted those who interact with bike messengers to gather more information about their attitudes and the way they interact with others.

They prioritize:

aggregate persona

Tyler Stefanson

overview

Flatbush, Brooklyn
Bike Messenger
30 years old
20k per year
Tyler works for a courier company to transport last-minute deliveries of important documents or packages within Manhattan. He averages 100 deliveries per day and earns $3-$5 per delivery.

insights

  1. He alternates between two bike saddles.
  2. He uses parts of his bike—handlebars, saddle, and wheels—as moments for personal expression.
  3. His fender and saddle priorities are similar.

challenges

  1. Choosing between bike saddles.
  2. Compromising bike aesthetic for water protection.
  3. Finding a saddle that visually aligns with his bike and personal aesthetic.

technical needs

  1. Durability
  2. Convenience
  3. Maneuverability

attitude

  1. Positive
  2. Competitive
  3. Introverted

motivations

  1. Many daily deliveries
  2. "The thrill"
  3. Bike aesthetics

fender & saddle priorities

  1. Durability
  2. Coverage
  3. Aesthetic statements

key insight

Bike messengers have multiple saddles, each optimized for different riding and weather conditions

opportunity

Design a saddle and fender as a single product for use when it rains

  • Integrate the fender into the bike for visual and mechanical synchronicity.
  • Eliminate the decision whether or not to use a fender depending if the forecast calls for rain.
  • Empower the messenger with convenience and a satisfying user experience.

how it works

Deploy it when you need it, then retract it

The saddle and fender are designed and built together. The fender is lightweight, functional and provides ample coverage to prevent wetness and ensuing discomfort.

under the cover

Durable and convenient

The fender slides along a track built into the saddle shell. Magnets make the fender snap into place for  a satisfying user experience.

brand

Stick your Tongue out

The fender slides along a track built into the saddle shell. Magnets make the fender snap into place for a satisfying user experience.

The saddle and fender are designed and built together. The fender is lightweight and functional. It provides ample coverage to prevent wetness from rear-wheel tire spray and ensuing discomfort.

Sound up 🔈