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Sunday October 27, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Sunday October 27, 2013 MYT 10:04:23 AM
Team effort: Tan (left) and Ker are confident that the local app developing industry will grow with more app designing competitions and support from related agencies.
MALAYSIANS’ love for promotions is the idea behind the app Perks designed by Ker Jia Chiun and Tan Jit Ren.
Calling themselves Team Pillow, Ker and Tan entered the Malaysia Developer’s Day 2013 (MDD2013), a hackathon organised by AT&T and the MCMC, recently and won the first prize of US$10,000 (RMRM32,000) with Perks, which provides a fast and easy way for people to look for promotions.
The app incorporates the social media element, turn-by-turn navigation and also tracks achievements that allow users to view all the promotions available with a single tap on the sign-in icon.
They based their idea on Malaysia’s Facebook usage statistics, which showed that the average Malaysian spends at least 20% of his or her time on the social media network looking for promotions.
However, when they surfed through the three big mobile stores – AppStore, Play Store and Marketplace – they found only a few Malaysian promotions-based apps available.
“We knew there were some gaps here and there, and therefore it was something that can be improved further,” says Ker.
The team spent a lot of time on the design of the app to make it look attractive and more “international” as well as adding on personal touches.
“We felt that paying attention to ‘user experience’ was the key in developing an app such as this,” says Tan.
He concedes that the biggest challenge will be sustaining the attention and interest of users on a particular product.
“Statistics have shown that consumers have the tendency to ignore your product after 10 seconds if they find nothing interesting,” he says.
However, these budding app developers are confident that the local app developing industry will only grow, especially with more app designing competitions and support from related agencies and global telcos.
Earlier this month, Team Pillow got the opportunity to present their product at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Kuala Lumpur as part of their prize.
“We know the competition in the international market is very strong. But Malaysia is not that far behind other countries. Competitions like the MDD2013 will give budding app developers a chance to build on their ideas. It shows the world what we can do and gives us an opportunity to meet potential investors there. Perhaps more agencies and colleges can look into organising similar competitions,” says Tan.
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