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Sens Coffee: The Bean Tales


Nowadays, consumers usually choose the type of coffee made through specific menus and do not have the right to select the type of coffee beans. In this service design project, I redesigned a coffee-consuming experience that allows customers to feel the aroma and the sound of the coffee beans and then mix the beans themselves which are used to make coffee.

This project is generally artistic, and different from coffee shops in the fast age, it describes a process that allows people to peacefully select coffee beans and blend them by themselves. The Sens Coffee project emphasizes increasing the user experience in the entire process of contact with coffee (seeing - listening - smelling - tasting coffee beans).

Commercial potential: 

1. Enhance user engagement through personalized music: Each customer can generate a simple sound rhythm after ordering a cup of coffee. When the customer's coffee is ready, the sound of the customer's coffee will fill the coffee shop to remind him that it is time to get coffee.

2. Coffee Perfume, Coffee aroma experience installation.

Self-Driven Research Project


Zhanling Feng (graduated from RCA IDE)


2020 UXD Award - Third Prize

My Skills

Sensory experience research

Tangible prototype making

Electronic design (Arduino)


UI/UX design

Business acumen


Sens Coffee Introduction Video

Sens Coffee  Interior Architecture Video

Research Question

Research Question

Coffee is the second largest circulating commodity in the world. However, in coffee shops today, consumers tend to only interact with coffee through their sense of taste, which is not conducive to the spread of coffee culture.

Can we extend a sensory experience and design a synesthetic interaction for coffee?

Existing Sensory Experience

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Cocktail Mixing

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Tea Ceremony

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Sensory Restaurant

Field Research

Field Research

I went to three different coffee shops. Experienced and observed the user's entire coffee consumption process.

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I interviewed three people in a coffee shop. According to the interview results, although current consumers like to drink coffee, they know little about the knowledge behind coffee beans. However, they are all interested in learning more about coffee and are open to doing some "coffee experiments."




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Some sketches to explore space and equipment suitable and interesting for coffee interaction.

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Sensory Experience

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Coffee Aroma & Brain

Explore how coffee odor enters the brain and how it affects humans.

Beans Sound Visualization

Coffee Beans Sound Visualization

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I bought five representative types of coffee beans for coffee cupping. According to my preferences and the characteristics of coffee,  I choose a note for each type of coffee. My measurement is based on the mellowness, sourness, and smell of the coffee.

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Note Definition

Note selection range: within the seven tones starting from Middle C.


Do (Middle C) (tastes very mellow, as deep as the sound of Middle C)

Veroso Estate-Brazilian Red Fruits:

Mi (not very sour and not very mellow)


Si (I don’t like it, so his frequency is relatively high, indicating a sharp noise)


La (sour and the smell is not strong)


So (tastes sour but smells good)

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Music Example

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Mix Huila, Veroso Estate-Brazilian Red Fruits, Maraba, Limu, Hambella = 5:3:4:1:2. The rhythm is based on the proportion of the beans in each coffee.

Experience Design

Experience Design

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There are two ways to experience coffee.

The first route is through Zones 1, 2, 3, 7, 8.

This route is a stimulating way to blindly choose coffee. No. 1 is a gumball machine, where the customer can't determine which coffee beans are contained in the blend inside. When the customer pays, they can go directly to the bar counter (Zone 7), give the coffee to the barista, and then choose their coffee style. While customers are drinking their coffee, they can see a variety of sustainable products made from coffee grounds in Zone 8.


The second route is through Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

In this route, people have the ability to choose what kinds of coffee beans they want. The rest of the procedure is the same as described above. In conclusion, through this coffee experience process, not only can people choose the type of coffee bean, but they can also have the ability to choose the style of coffee they enjoy.

Sens Coffee Experience Map

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Service Blueprint

Service Blueprint

App Design

App Design

Package Design

Package Design

This package design shows my infographic skills.

The color of the package clearly reflects the light, medium and dark roasting methods. The colorful label is a visualization of the taste, flavor and sound of the coffee.

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