Iomega Zip drive and disk
In the mid 1990's Iomega was in dire financial straights. Their biggest selling product the 'Bernoulli Box' was selling small volumes into niche markets and the company was headed towards bankruptcy.
A new management team was brought in, and after doing extensive user research with consumers we found that conventional removable storage had several problems, primarily people found it boring and confusing. The result of that research was the Zip drive. Designed to be intuitive to use, and anything but boring as a little blue box in a sea of beige. Every feature of the design was a response to the research. The drive had a window, because users wanted to easily see if a disk was in the device. The disk was keyed to the opening in the drive so that it could only be inserted right side up, and visual and tactile cues told the user what the front and back of the disk were. Even cable management of the power cable was considered so that it could not be accidentally pulled out.
The Zip drive turned the company around and increased revenue to over a billion dollars in less than two years while replacing the floppy disk as the industry standard for removable storage.