What was the scope of their involvement?
We worked with Rantmedia to develop the apps to help people understand and work with the devices more closely.
We initially met with them and shared our rough ideas of what we wanted along with one of our prototype devices. Technically, we told them the needed functions, but we didn’t have any knowledge on how the app would look or work or how the user would interact with it. We discussed ideas, and then they produced a scoping document including what they thought it should do and how it should look. We had screenshots of how it would look, including the colors and the branding. It was a very interactive process with a lot of discussions, and we worked as a team.
Writing an app that interacts with our firmware, a physical device, added another level of complexity to the scope. We worked hard to produce a document that they could work with to be able to really grasp our product; they helped in clarifying what was and wasn’t required. We wrote some demo code together and worked to understand the requirements and what could be done realistically within our timeframes and budget.
Before they started coding, they provided very clear, high-quality documentation of what the app was going to do, how the UX designers think, how the user will interact with it, and what it would look like.
They did all the design work for the UX side. They spent a lot of time exploring how a typical user might use the app, not just how it looked and where the buttons were but how people would navigate around the app, and what features could be added to make the app even better. Both the iOS and Android apps are native apps that they developed to deal with Bluetooth.
We are currently about to update the original device and have been working with Rant recently to get quotes to upgrade all the software.
What is the team dynamic?
I had direct interaction with 4 people from Rant. We had someone overseeing the project, as well as 3 technical people.
How did you come to work with Rantmedia?
We did a web search for software houses local to us. Because the project would interact with our hardware, we were aware of that extra level of complexity, as well as the fact we were still developing the hardware at that point. We wanted someone that could, if necessary, get on the phone or meet face-to-face, find any issues, and work through them as quickly as possible.
By far, Rant felt strongest in what they could deliver, the quality, and the way we could work and interact with them. We had confidence in their technical and UX ability as well. It was a perfect match for us.
How much have you invested in them?
We have spent about 20,000—25,000 pounds.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with Rant in April 2015, and the app was ready for launch in the beginning of 2016. We have worked together on smaller projects since then, and the work is ongoing.