Engage with a new audience through a more inclusive design

  • Brand Design
  • Digital Experiences
De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks

The TV quiz show ‘De Slimste Mens’ has been a favorite among the Dutch audience for many years. Accompanied by its app, which saw 250,000 unique users last season, it enables participation in challenges from the comfort of their homes.

The ‘De Slimste Mens’ app was launched in 2014. As its popularity grew, maintaining and optimizing it became increasingly challenging, resulting in some shortcomings. This prompted KRO-NCRV to reach out to GRRR in 2020 to breathe new life into the app. Since then, we’ve been working on enhancing and revitalizing the ‘De Slimste Mens’ app.

De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks

A facelift without alienating users

Since 2020, our focus has centered on goals that align with the visual and functional aspects of the ‘De Slimste Mens’ app. These objectives encompass enhancing app performance and user experience, cutting down expenses, and broadening the user base.

We’ve consistently considered loyal users who had been using the app previously. We understand how frustrating it can be to encounter a completely new design where certain buttons are suddenly relocated or to lose your hard-earned high score. That’s why we have preserved the core essence of the game. Simultaneously, we’ve worked on the design to establish a stronger connection between the app and the TV show through the visual identity.

To enhance the app’s technical aspects and reduce management costs, we developed the app using a shared codebase for both iOS and Android platforms. Additionally, we transitioned to a new technical infrastructure utilizing modern cloud services.

De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks


  • +79 Mnotifications sent
  • +/- 2 uurplaytime per month per person
  • 4,4rating
De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks
Improving the app began with an analysis, followed by restructuring the app's framework and enhancing its functional design. Finally, we took measures to drastically enhance the app's performance.
Jelmer Boomsma , GRRR’s Strategy consultant
De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks

Who gets crowned ‘De Slimste' at Home?

In April 2023, we launched the latest game feature, ‘De Slimste Thuis,’ allowing players to use voice control to play the game. This new gameplay offers an interactive experience resembling a ‘live’ board game. Start the game, place your phone on the table, and play ‘hands-free’ with only your ears and voice. The game allows up to 6 players to participate.

We thoroughly tested this game element for maximum accessibility and achieved impressive results from the launch in April 2023 to the end of the summer season in August 2023, with over 321,500 games started and 1.36 million rounds played!

De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks

What do you know about... Inclusivity?

Who wouldn’t want to enjoy better contrast, a clear and user-friendly interface, and easily understandable content?

Inclusivity in digital services is mandatory for (semi-)governmental institutions, but it’s crucial for the 300,000 visually impaired Dutch people. That’s why we introduce ‘De Slimste Thuis,’ granting this group the opportunity to participate in the game.

Before launching the new game element, it underwent an extensive testing procedure. We developed a Proof-of-Concept (POC) to test its technical feasibility. Based on the POC results, the final game was designed and developed. As part of the app’s testing process, we had a WCAG audit conducted by the Appt Foundation to assess the level of inclusivity. This allowed us to implement necessary improvements and ensure the game’s inclusivity.

De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks app telefoon mockup
Previously, we developed a voice-controlled quiz of De Slimste Mens for smart speakers. That was a success, but with this enhancement, anyone with a smartphone can play the game using voice commands, which is fantastic. It's very enjoyable to play together and have direct interaction instead of each person staring at their own screen.
Manager Digitaal & Marketing bij KRO-NCRV, Femke Hesemans
De slimste mens Maarten van Rossem en Philip Freriks app

From two to 4.4 stars

When we took over the design and development responsibilities for the ‘De Slimste Mens’ app in 2020, it had a 2-star rating in both the App Store and Google Play Store. Fast forward to September 2023, the app’s rating has increased to 4.4 stars in the App Store.

We’ve already sent over 73 million notifications to players. Earlier this year, 1.9 million notifications were even sent to players in a single day. During the same period, users were found to use the app an average of 26 times per month, achieving our goals.