What was the scope of their involvement?
We were searching through a bunch of companies. We were choosing based on price, where the company is located, we wanted English-speaking, and we wanted to be able to work with our company during our hours. Sunflower provided one of the best set ups for us. They were easy to find. They were located in New Jersey. We're based in New York right now; that's where I am. My partner is in Louisiana. With our time difference and us being able to meet with Yash [Patel, Founder] and his team at Sunflower Labs, everything worked out perfectly. I'd say their price, their time, the amount of effort they put into the pre-planning, puts them in a good place when we were trying to figure out who to choose.
I would pretty much label everything out on a PowerPoint for them, the design that we thought would work best as well as the user flow and the algorithm. I shared that with their team, and we reviewed it over Skype, and we walked through each page. Then they came back to me with their feedback and positive changes that they would also make to our algorithm or to how everything works to make the user experience flow better. It was almost like we were partnering together. It didn't feel like I was hiring a company; it felt more like a partnership than anything else. Especially with regards to the pre-planning because the algorithm is such a difficult process to think about.
Right now, we're just on iOS, but we have talked about Android. We got pricing from the Sunflower team because we've worked well, they know the code, they know everything behind it. We didn't know how to go about making an app. What was helpful was that they walked us through everything from advice to getting on a server to eventually showing us what kind of code they were doing on the backend to make the app work.
We needed backend and frontend development as well as just the user flow, user interface, and design. All of those things incorporated into the app. They would give us advice on how to serve our application and website and how everything works when we submit to the app store. They were very helpful and knowledgeable about the whole process.
We just launched our first version in May, and we realized very quickly that it worked the way we wanted, but when we had our test subjects using it, we didn't promote it. It was a little too difficult to understand because we had much more restrictions in the first algorithm, so we went back and worked with Yash's team, and we came up with a much simplified version of what we originally rolled out. We've launched that one this past weekend and so far, it's done very well with our testing.
We're about to launch it at a tailgate this weekend as well. We both went to Penn State University, and we had about a couple of hundred people come to this tailgate, so we're thinking about getting our feet wet and seeing how it does on a large scale.
The algorithm is restrictive to whoever is in possession of it. For example, if you're presenting your screen on any platform, whether you use Skype for Business or whether you're using WebEx or one of those platforms and you have the ball, or you're the one presenting, you can share that presentership to anybody else you like in the group. Then they have control over what everybody else sees in the group at that moment in time.
The ways ours works, it's not live, but you can share the possession with someone else for a selected period. If your group has a two-minute time limit, I can give you the baton at that moment and picture on a track you're running with it; you're going with it. Whatever picture you take or whatever video you take next, gets put onto the timeline and syndicated with the time stamped, so it all gets fed through and you can watch back every post that's made in that group.
How did you come to work with Sunflower Lab?
Through an Internet search.
How much have you invested with Sunflower Lab?
About $30,000 to $40,000.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with Sunflower Labs about two years ago; I would say, and it's an ongoing relationship.