Travelers often face a problem wherever they go owing to less knowledge of 'local' information about the new cities they visit. Written or human guides exhibit the same, –monotonous and standard must-dos or must-sees, but none talk about the unique opportunities the city has to offer, or write about the places, food and culture specialties of the place, which only the locals know.
Ulocal is an app created to specifically and completely satisfy a traveler's need for local information when visiting new places. It is built to enhance a traveler's experience to get the feel of the new city just like a local.
The objective is to create a system where users (travelers) would be able to connect with the locals of other cities/travel places, to enable travelers to call/chat with the locals easily without incurring much cost. This would help them identify interesting locations in a city and source information that only locals know about, like the best things to do in that city and even know about opportunities from the locals. The key requisite was the ability to make free calls – domestic and international, to locals.
The MOGIC (Mobisoft Logic)
Research & Discovery
No other travel agent, portal or app has helped travelers get 'local' information beyond routine maps. Besides, there has been no other app in similar domains.
The app offers free and easy voice calling across borders, without gruesome technical issues. The main challenge was to incorporate a third party service that would offer a feasible facility of free calling.
Engineer a dynamic, scalable app with free calling that would deliver a consistent user experience for multiple cities in the world, across multiple categories.
The core feature of this app was 'free voice calling' across cities, countries, continents. The key development challenge was VOIP integration. We invested valuable man hours in locating an API provider that could be used for this app; did a Proof-of-Concept of the same and integrated it with our app. The system was tested rigorously till it performed to our benchmark criteria.
Chat Server Integration
One of the biggest and most challenging deployments for this app was a custom chat server engine we built for Ulocal so a million people could chat concurrently without any breakdowns. We optimized the app in such a way that the calls start asynchronously while the other information about the call is being retrieved or while the other elements of the app are getting initialized.
The app is kept simple and user-focused. User experience and engagement ruled our design philosophy. Enhancements with animation and effects served to augment user engagement.
- Call features:VOIP integration was the toughest call for this app. The quality of the calls, time to respond, ringtones, the offline calling mode were some of the most challenging developments of this feature.
- Chat server integration:We have implemented online chat as also, offline notifications for chats.
- FREE:Free in-app messaging and calling worldwide allows users to call foreign numbers with no charge
- No sharing of personal number:Unlike other voice apps, Ulocal users are never required to share their personal phone number
- Real-time connections:All connections and information are exchanged in real-time
- User friendly:No complicated functions, terminology, or interface to learn
- Intuitive UI:A simple layout and intuitive design makes easy connection with people
The App at a Glance
"It was a great work experience to collaborate with such an international company that is so far away and full of experienced professionals."
- Eddy (Edoardo Centioni)