Cablevision DVR App

Company: Cablevision
Project: Cablevision DVR App
Role: Freelance UX Designer
Strategies: UX + UI, prototyping
Deliverables: UX Workflows, UI design, prototypes
Timeline: December 2009 – April 2010


With the increase in smartphone usage since the iPhone’s launch in 2007, mobile apps were moving beyond cheap games and entertainment and into useful apps for the technology around us. Cablevision became the first cable company to launch a platform that allowed their cable box to interact with the cloud, enabling their users to manage their TV content away from home.


Create an interface that allows users to search TV listings and manage the DVR from their mobile phone.

  • Priority should be put on scheduling a show to be recorded, but should also include the management of existing recordings.
  • Users should have full access to everything they have at home, including the use of multiple cable boxes, the full schedule of TV listings, and the ability to record and manage an entire TV series.
  • Users should be able to easily search for and identify specific channels, shows and air dates.


The app interface was designed with strong focus on the channels and the quick interaction to record directly from the TV listings with a “swipe to record” experience. Feedback from prototypes showed that users didn’t mind scrolling more if it meant that the channels and information was easier to read. The implementation of the “search” feature also proved to save a lot of time if users knew what they were looking for.

Confirmation prompts and status icons were designed to validate selected actions of adding or deleting a recording. Being that this was the first experience for the user base to use cloud based recording, affirmation was required to gain trust in the mobile app and experience.

The interface was also carefully considered for scalability, allowing Cablevision to become the first Cable Provider in the US to offer live stream Television in an update to the same application. The design of a fully functional TV Listing and the ability to view a selected detail screen of each show allowed future generations of the app to add a “Watch Now” button with minimal changes to the rest of the application.




The Cablevision app released to great success, gathering new customers and increasing customer retention to compete against bigger companies like Time Warner Cable in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. Cablevision became “the first television provider to have an app that delivered a customer’s full cable TV service to a variety of devices capable of functioning as televisions in the home” and grew to be the 9th largest television provider in the United States before being acquired by Altice in 2015 for $17.7 billion dollars.