We had a chance to speak to
Saju Abraham, the Senior Product Manager at
Left of the Dot Media
Could you share a challenging factor of the development or marketing process?
Testing the app is by far the most challenging factor; the wifi networks around the world are implemented very differently, so we have to make sure our app works over a variety of networks. However, since it is all about hyperlocal and not the Internet, we must be physically present in order to test our app. Not only is this very time consuming and expensive, but we also need to find a variety of user testers in all of our target regions to receive proper feedback.
Do you plan on releasing your app to other platforms as well?
We are in development for the iOS and Firefox OS.
We are also considering Windows phone.
A desktop version is planned for year two or three.
If you could describe your app in ONE word, what would it be and why?
Empowerment, for reasons explained above!
Were there any unexpected surprises post-release of your app?
Our product launched (and still is) considered MVP: Minimal Viable Product. Therefore we logically expected many negative reviews and comments since the app is not where we want it to be, in terms of optimization, features, UI, content, etc. However, we have been received quite favorably thus far, and that was a rather unexpected surprise.
What features do you hope to roll out to your app in the future?
Content discovery, to be a platform for content
Long term – YO! Box Content Hubs (public spaces, businesses, venues)
Long term - Mesh networking
What is the coolest or most innovative feature of your app?
It would have to be the speed of data transfer. Everyone knows YO! can connect users without the Internet, but not everyone knows just how fast it allows that to happen. Of course, we also have plenty of exciting features in plan for the future.
What is your favorite mobile app to date and which have inspired you?
Shazam was a big inspiration. The discovery aspect and their core IP is very unique and innovating.
What was your main objective or motivation for creating your mobile app?
The technology was created by our development team to solve their slow and unstable, but still expensive, Internet connectivity. The reality for our team half a world away in Bangladesh was the same reality for billions of people in developing and emerging markets around the world: internet connectivity is poor to non-existent, power outages are common, and data costs are disproportionately high compared to wages.
Now we have the opportunity to help others who are in similar situations, like students at Khulna University, or in situations where internet is just not available. Similar to Facebook's Internet.org initiative, we believe that the ability to share and connect with each other is an inherent right that should be available to every single person on this planet. It is more than just connecting the unconnected; it is about empowering the less fortunate and building a tighter, close-knit global community.
You can view YO! here
Or click here for more information: https://www.yo.com