Exploring new ways of delivering software licensing prompted Arm to enlist our Virtual Experience Team to work alongside their product team.


Virtual Experience Team (VXT™); Usability Testing; Interface Design


Case study overview

The challenge

Arm are a silicon IP design company whose core products are the designs (IP) for low power processors. Arm’s customers include companies such as Samsung and Apple who use Arm’s IP to develop processors and peripheral ICs to power their mobile products. Devices based on Arm IP require the development of specific software. To support this, Arm have either develop or acquired software development kits and associated tools that developers can use to speed up their projects. These supporting software tools are licensed to either individuals as well as large companies.

To manage licenses, Arm have a dedicated team of professionals who process most of the requests as tickets to support licensing requests, as well as detect and avoid license abuse. Manually processing licensing issues is very labour intensive, often repetitive and results in delays between requests and responses which, in most cases are too long. Arm therefore decided to develop a self-service portal that would be able to handle large volumes of requests, cope with the wide variety of products as well as the different license models and prevent the fraudulent use of licenses.

Akendi were fantastic to work with. They brought a wealth of knowledge and expertise, working closely with our in-house development team to deliver valuable content and insights in a timely manner. I would really recommend them to anyone looking to develop products and services with a high quality user experience.

Client quotation

Virtual Experience Team

Our approach

Enabling customers to self service their licensing needs cannot be solved by simply developing a web portal in isolation. An optimal solution would need to be based on a deeper understanding of the development process and the role and use of the tools within this by a team of developers, as well as those Arm customer stakeholders who are responsible for managing and purchasing licenses. Considering and validating the experience journey rather than the requirements of ‘just’ a visitor to the self-serve licensing portal is core to the way in which Akendi addressed this challenge.

Our approach led to us define the information architecture based on the different licensing models, products and features the portal needs to support as part of the overall journey. The final architecture modelled all information and functions the portal needs to offer over the next 3 years.

We identified, in collaboration with Arm, what functionality is required for a first minimum viable product (MVP), before designing low fidelity prototypes that demonstrated how a potential solution could meet the customer requirements as defined in the portal.

We then developed a higher level prototype that contained enough details to test with representative Arm customers, which we did quarterly and iterated the design accordingly. Finally, we developed a production-grade interaction design of the portal.

The project resulted in the design of a first MVP based on the research and iterative test results. The final version of the portal was different from what Arm had anticipated at the start of the project, being much more user-focused.

How can we help you?

Let’s Chat

About Akendi

Akendi is a human experience design firm, leveraging equal parts experience research and creative design excellence. We provide strategic insights and analysis about customer and user behaviour and combine this knowledge with inspired design. The results enable organizations to improve effectiveness, engage users and provide remarkable customer experiences to their audiences.