App Brainstorming!

The past two weeks required a surge of creative thinking on behalf of our group and so, in an effort to aid the discussion process, we assembled a group chat on Facebook where all members were encouraged to fire their own ideas and designs into the pot and informally chat about said concepts without the restrictive stiffness of a proper group meeting. For most individuals, the best ideas have a tendency to pop into your head randomly at unsuitable hours, the group chat allowed up to publically record these ideas without the need for pen and paper in the middle of the night.

Having recently written a makeup dupe piece on my own personal blog (and thought nothing more of it!) my colleague Eimear cleverly pointed out that an app that advices users on less expensive alternatives for luxury/high-end beauty products could be a real contender for our “big idea”. Being unapologetically a group of “girlie girls” for want of a better phrase, we collectively decided to trawl the App Store to see how original this model was and came upon an app called “Drugstore Dupes” sporting a download price of €2.99. The description seemed quite similar to our own idea and displayed only one rather negative review of the app, not an ideal edge for the app developers. We also thought the pricing for the app was a bit ridiculous considering that the information displayed on the platform was available for free on social bookmarking sites like Pinterest and Tumblr, never the less I decided to take one for the team and pay to download the app so we could gauge what the layout was like. Quite personally I was less than impressed, at an asking price of €4 such an app should ideally include some basic imagery of the products at the very least but the layout itself was far from interactive or visually appealing exhibiting more of a forum like design altogether. We decided that the app was definitely a real contender for a bit of a fixer-upper which we could perhaps improve upon.

It wasn’t just makeup on our minds however! We also discussed an application somewhat resembling the already highly successful Zomato but designed specifically for students in pursuit of lunchtime deals and offers. As students ourselves, finding new cafes that offer value for money combined with good quality cuisine is always a welcome discovery. We recently got very excited to find that Chopped has opened a new outlet in St Stephens Green and played with the idea that it would be beneficial to both students and restaurants to advertise their lunch deals on a kind of Pigs Back/UniDays like platform. Finally, we also reflected upon the fact that as frequent Hailo and Uber users we occasionally feel a little vulnerable when travelling alone in taxis, particularly in the evening. We discussed the possibilities of making requests for female drivers an in app feature with popular taxi apps as a solution to the unease we sometimes feel as women travelling alone. Although none of us have officially determined “The Big Idea” for us just yet, we certainly have quite a few serious contenders to choose from.

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