Project Type

Middle Term

Area of Expertise

Service Design


The energy sector is in a major change. Not only the way energy is being produced, but also how it is distributed and how new services emerge around this business is bringing about far-reaching changes – in particular with regard to an increasing digitization in all spheres of life.

In cooperation with the energy provider Yello, KISD – Köln International School of Design initiated the mid-term project called “Smart Digital Services“. The aim of the project was to create new services and business models. The project focused especially on the topic of “prototyping“ and was supervised by Prof. Birgit Mager.

The project started with an exploration through contextual interviews, an energy diary, and the analysis of the interface of Yello. Based on these findings, two groups of students developed four concepts around the topics of losing costumers, the smart meter, and energy in public spaces. After a successful presentation at Yello, they are now working on a possible implementation of the concepts.

How can you turn an experience like moving out and the need of changing your electricity provider into a positive touchpoint? A team of four students addressed this issue by creating a service where Yello gives clients free moving boxes as a farewell present – and if they decide to stay with Yello as their provider, they get a free pantechnicon.

Parallel to this project, another group of five students developed the concept of the Yello Bike. The Yello Bike prototype can generate electricity while riding which can be used to charge your mobile phone. The concept is available in two variations: first as a bike-sharing concept and second as a permanently installed station at public traffic stops or in parks.