Tribel: Music Collaboration

Bringing musicians together in a tribe-like community


Tribel is community focused and a platform for musicians to collaborate, share and learn music. I designed and prototyped this app during my time at TD. Our design manager provided each design intern with a topic. We had to discover a problem in that market and provide a solution.  


I worked as UI/UX Design Intern at TD Lab in a team along with 2 designers and 5 developers. I worked as the product designer from the project's start to finish. I was involved with ideation, market research, user research, wireframing, prototyping and presenting my designs.


After presenting my work at the end of the term in front of TD Lab employees, I decided to redesign key screens in the app in December 2018. I redesigned these screens to better capture the problem I was solving and to provide a more modern and cohesive visual style.


When it comes to music collaboration, there are a lot of aspects that could be focused on. To define a problem, I had to first perform market research as well as user research. Then, I narrowed the scope of the problem to create a problem statement for this chosen topic.


What musical applications and tools are out there right now?


From my research, the top competitors in this space were Bandlab, Bandhub, Kompoz, Blend and Trackd. These five applications were fundamentally similar to one another but each had something unique that they brought to the table. For example, Trackd focused on simplicity, on-the-go mobile music creation whereas Blend was a more advanced application focused on music production.


After learning a bit more about these apps, I created a survey using Google Forms to understand my potential user base more. I chose to do a survey because I had limited time and monetary resources.

I wanted answers to a few questions:

  • Do people know about music creation collaboration apps?
  • Which apps have they heard of before?
  • Why do people choose to use/not use music creation collaboration apps?
  • If one were to use a music collaboration app, what would they value?

Using Facebook, I messaged the a cappella groups on my campus to gather participants. I received 25 responses in total, all a cappella students at the University of Waterloo. This contributed to some bias in the survey since most participants were vocalists, but it gave a rough idea of potential users.


From my personas, I created a user journey map for a typical music collaboration app to identify opportunities for Tribel and how we can differentiate ourselves by defining a problem space.

There were 5 guiding principles I determined from my research:









I created a problem statement to guide my design decisions:


How might we create a convenient and fun experience for musicians of all skill levels to collaborate and/or perform music together regardless of location?


There were a lot of screens that I would have to create so I decided to create workflows to organize my thoughts. Due to time constraints, I chose three essential workflows that best represented the app (click to expand):


Collaboration + Creation







While working on the workflows, I needed to have a common terminology for the components of my app. Here are a few examples:

  • Project: composed of one or more tracks; any user may create or edit a project
  • Track: a single audio recording; can be modified by adding effects, snipping and changing speed
  • Fork Project: create your own copy of a project that you can modify 
  • Push Project: update public project with latest saved changes


After labelling my workflows with components, I created wireframes to go in depth with the flow. I took inspiration from existing applications and prioritized features and components using my problem statement.

I decided to split the app into four sections to capture the most important functionalities of the app.

  • Home Feed: A centralized location for users to quickly interact with the community and access core feautres of the app (creating and editing projects)
  • Projects: Easy access to edit projects
  • Discover: Find other users and projects
  • Profile: View and edit your own profile


From the wireframes, I created visual designs. 


I had to go through the entire design process when working on this app. I learned a lot about how to apply what I've learned; how to find the right tools to discover meaningful results.

There was a lot that I didn't get to do with the app because of time and resource restraints. If I had the chance to spend more time on the app, I would:

  • Refine colour scheme and feel of the app
  • Build upon the “community” aspect by incorporating features like groups, forums and contests
  • Define an in-app currency (ie. Patreon)
  • Look into incorporating a performance aspect
  • Match and meetup with local musicians (ie. Tinder)
  • Recognize up and coming musicians and help get their name out there


In January 2019, I wanted to re-design the look and feel of the app so I started to research existing design patterns. Why the redesign? I wanted to practise my visual design skills and communicate Tribel in a way that was more modern and friendly.

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