While I was on maternity leave, I had a lot of free time. I found it quite hard filling that time with interesting activities. I’d look at what my friends are getting up to on Facebook which was generally limited to what movie they were watching or what restaurant they were eating at.
So I looked for ideas on hobbies I could try, places I could go and and things I could do on google. This was quite laborious and wasted days trying to find something to do with my time which Was very counterproductive.
I tried looking for apps that might give me ideas on things to do but was unsuccessful as apps as most apps were very niche so there was apps for mums, thrill seekers, history buffs, travellers etc but nothing that just gave me ideas of general things I could be doing.
So I decided to design an app myself were users can post activities they are doing and other users can see that activity and ‘snap’ it to show they have also done/doing or will be doing the same in the future.
The first version of the app was made by an armature developer Jeffery of J R Linton Apps, who hired another developer Aplos Innovations to do the job. He had one version of the app made and published but the quality of work was so poor, the app had lost of glitches and kept crashing. He blamed this on the platform used to make the app which was objective c. He recommended remaking the app on Swift which should be a lot better.
Swift seemed to be a better choice and the new version of the app was definitely better. A video of which you can see below. The app was published even though it had a few issues that needed addressing but I felt it was good enough to put out there in the world until the new features were being worked on.
But due to the lack of professionalism and business acumen on Jeffery’s part, the app was not progressing the way I wanted. Jeffery started ignoring my emails, messages and phone calls. I felt so powerless as the app was on his server so could not even hire an alternative developer to finish the job. When I finally got through to him and asked for the app to be moved to my own server, I was met with excuses like, the developer is sick so no one is available to do it.
I’ve completely lost control of my new business venture and I didn’t know what to do. I decided to try and contact the developers directly to see if I can work with them instead. So I googled my app and I stumbled across a website that claim to have developed it. I contacted them and got a reply from a Hashim Yasin who claimed to be the company founder and CEO. He told me a very different story about why the app was not progressing. Apparently Jeffery and Aplos Innovations had broken ties which is why there had been no progress. So he had lied to me it appears.
I suggested we cut out Jeffery and work directly together. I asked for the source code for the app and for the API to be moved to my server. Unsurprisingly, Hashim wanted a fee for doing the job. So begrudgingly, I handed over the money and waiting for the work to be done. All of a sudden, my app stopped working. I assumed this was due to it being moved over to my server. I asked Hashim and he responded by sending over the source code but told me that his server had been hacked and everything on there had been deleted.
Absolute nightmare! My app has been lost it seemed! How does a professional development company not have a backup of their server? Hashim assured me that he is trying to recover the app and it was apparently an inside job. Someone within the company had deliberately deleted the files on the server. After that conversation, Hashim also did a disappearing act, claiming to be busy trying to recover the data.
After a few weeks of misery at the prospect of losing my app and all the money I invested in it, I decided to try and tract down each Aplos employee to see if they can help me piece my app together. I used the various resources availble to me like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. I managed to get hold of various individuals who were gracious enough to help. I managed to find the co founder of Aplos, Owais Zaidi, who quite happily sent me the various bits of the app.
I hired a new developer Nitin from Olbuz who had great credentials from India, to put all the pieces together, fix all the problems and add the additional features I wanted. Nitin was great and managed to do everything I wanted and CLIQUEY is finally published in its full glory.
The app has a user generated database of activities, so the more and diverse range of users we have, the more interesting the app will be. Users will also be able to rate the activity they have done to better inform other users before they choose to do the activity.
The app allows you to plan your weekend, holiday, places to go, movies to see, things to do. It’s a one stop shop for all your activities and hopefully will motivate users to be more active and try new things as well as see what is currently trending amongst their connections.
It has been a long journey but this is only the beginning. I hope you enjoy using my app as I will enjoy continuing to develop and improve it for the benefit of the users.