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Geo-Based Social Network For Gamified Travel

How Visartech performed the full-cycle location-based social network development of a unique tourism ecosystem with a gamification touch that won market recognition

Atlas Globe Ltd is a B2C company presented by a location-based social networking app. It aims to gamify the people’s experience in spontaneous traveling by exploring surroundings through a Pokemon-Go-like experience.

Industry:Travel

Location:United Kingdom

Partnership since: 2019

Top 2 & the Most Popular Startup awards at CCPC 2019

2-in-1 Game & a B2C Business App with B2B Potential

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The Brief

Facilitating the excitement of spontaneous travel with a gamified app.

“Imagine the year 2300. After many decades of humankind abandoning the Earth in favor of living on Mars, you decide to come back and explore the remnants of human civilization. All you have is the ExplorR app on your iPhone 320S to uncover the surroundings and gradually reveal the locations with memories attached to them. Parks, gardens, museums, restaurants – you start to have a mental picture of what life on Earth was like hundreds of years ago. It is always a magical moment to discover someone’s memories that give a soul to a previously lifeless place.”

That is the picture our client shared with us when we first talked. At that moment they had a poorly designed prototype. After the whole code architecture review, we have decided to build a new prototype from scratch.

Together we have completely redefined the exploration experience by falling into the demand of fundamentally different traveling – the people’s desire to discover places far off the guided tours, with more freedom, true culture, personal memories, and without prior planning.

Service Core

Accurate execution of the full-cycle app development process.

Tech Specification

Back-end Development

Front-end Development

Visual Content Production

Project Management

Quality Assurance

Maintenance

Challenges

How to make a geo-based social network MVP in the most efficient way possible.

The client has turned to the Visartech team with a passionate idea to revolutionize the traveling industry via an exciting location-based social network app that allows users to explore cities, discover new places, and deepen the connections between people and locations.

The first interactions included a code review of an initial prototype. This version had a poor, non-modular architecture that was hard to extend or maintain. So we’ve decided to build a new project from the ground, with all the functionality required for the MVP.
The experience of navigating the city was crucial for the success of the app. So, some other challenges were related to the map as well. The customizable animated user avatars had to be displayed on the map, to make the experience more personalized. And the “fog of war” effect had to be implemented to make it even more intriguing for the users to explore the surroundings.


The key feature of the app was an interactive real-time map with a custom style and 3D elements. But just making an interactive map was not enough.

Apart from it, there were also a lot of other social and backend-related features to implement:

  • Get through the authentication

    Create and access your own profile via Sign Up, Sign In, Reset Password functionality.

  • Leave the memoir at the POI

    Keep the memos and photos in the places of interest with an option to show them to friends or everyone.

  • Create the custom POI on the map

    Make your own POI, if the place you like is not marked on the map by default.

Solutions

End-to-end app development of a geo-based social network MVP.

The client was working on the tech documentation on a regular basis, keeping it always up to date, taking part in the project development as a part of an Agile team, and was always ready to explain the project requirements to the development team in detail. We have received all the art from the client.

This way, the Visartech team was solely responsible for the application development.
A gamified real-time nature of the mobile app that included the use of 3D elements has urged us to select Unity as the core frontend technology.

So, the team working on the project included:

  • PM
  • Tech Lead
  • Unity Developers
  • QA Engineer


The app development process was conducted using Scrum and an Agile approach with 2-week sprints, delivering intermediate results to the client regularly.


The client was actively involved in the product development, by participating in the Backlog Grooming, Sprint Planning, and Demo meetings with the development team.

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Visartech is incredible to work with. They understand exactly what is needed in our project brief. They are responsive, flexible and go the extra mile to achieve the tasks. Full of talented developers, making it very easy to work with. I would highly recommend working with them.
Andy LiCTO & Co-founder, ExplorR

Roadmap

The path to recognition in the reputable competition.

February 2019

Code review of the initial app version, requirements gathering, tech specification, and new prototype development.

April 2019

The app triumphs with winning two respected awards at the CCPC 2019.

May 2019

The app launched on the App Store and Play Market.

July 2019

The second release with new features and an improved UI.

August 2019

Further app support with necessary upgrades.

The Result

Getting recognition within an app community and in reputable competitions.

Together with the client, we have completely redefined the exploration experience by enabling users to create their own journeys via an app built with gamification and location-based technology.

Namely, this location-based social networking app can brag about the following results:

  • The Most Popular Award & Top 2 among 80+ pitch submissions, 8 out of those were selected to pitch to several US-China investor judges at CCPC 2019.
  • The app eventually was launched on popular app stores and formed a community of over 3000 users, 1624 POIs collected, and more than 18000 locations uncovered.
  • The application has combined game mechanics and a business app in one with a capacity to turn from a B2C approach to B2B with outdoor facilities.


The Visartech team is extremely delighted that our contribution to the app development has resulted in our clients’ success and recognition on the market. This outcome perfectly aligns with the mission and values we hold in our software development company aimed at delivery excellence.

ExplorR - Gamified Traveling Today

2+
Competition Awards
1624+
Places Collected
3000+
Travellers Engaged
18000+
Locations Uncovered

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