Samba Mobile

Free mobile broadband wit a little bit of advertising

Samba Communications Ltd. was founded in September 2009 and is one of the first companies in the world to offer advertiser-funded mobile broadband (3G internet) to customers, free of charge. As such, the company needed to combine web, telecoms and advertising technologies into a single proposition, resulting in a significant process of Research & Development to prove the concept, building the product and integrating the various partners, suppliers and platforms. Samba launched nationwide in the UK in May 2012.

”Just perfect simple, Just smart”

The value proposition was simple: users watched online ads and would get internet traffic (MB) for their phone/tablet for free.

*In collaboration with Chris Hardborne as Art Director.


Together with the product owners and the art director we established goals and created strategies that led us to clear user flows.

We started with the “User-Select-Model”, which Samba suggested with the purpose of generating higher conversion rates.

I created flows and wireframes to get things started and worked together with the product owner and art director to create a holistic experience centered around the user. The strategy went through a lot of focus groups on the client side and the mockups through a lot of user testing until we moved forward to the prototypes and UI development. The interface needed to be responsive as users would use it mostly on a device.

Evolution in revolution

The flows were preety straight formward so what we had to really nail down was the interaction. I did a lot of wireframes. We had focus groups and discussed a lot on why, how and where things shoud be on the screens. We planned each step of the user's journey. We did a lot of variations on the IA and focused on minimalism.

For the landing page the main goal was the signup. We decided to let users earn credit and then funnel their signup. This would allow the users to see how easy it is to earn credit and would also create scarcity of loosing the earned credit and would increase the chances of signing up.

Back to the drawing board

It's just about making it better. More discussions on the landing page, more research, a lot more iterations and finnaly a brand new home page.

The home page was rebuilt around the community and talk Samba was generating to reinforce trust, create associations and reassure new users about the service.

It was a balance dance between the minimalist ideology of the company(”Just perfect simple, Just smart”) and having the right amount of incentives.

The devil is in the details

We reduced the noise on the ad view page to maximize the impact of the ad on the viewer.

Final Design

I designed and created part of the UI under the guidence of the art director.I created the UI architecture and a front end work.

It's a magic battery

Samba used a battery to indicate the ammount of free internet available for the user so I designed one that would incorporate in the samba style.

Dongle App

We also designed the Samba dongle app and made it part of the experience.


Samba became an absolute hit. The business started to grow rapidly and most importantly, users love Samba because they are in charge. They earn as much or as little data as they want.

The Samba video engagement network is an aggregation of discrete innovations, which come together to make an advertising video distribution hyper-network – to the best of our knowledge the first in the world, and therefore unique. Imprezzio and Samba continue to grow the business together, using the same form of cooperation.