myVUWSA App By Teknowledge

By | March 9, 2015
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When an app…any app…retains its popularity for close to three years, there has got to be something special about it, right? Well, myVUWSA was launched at the stores in March 2012 – and over the years, its popularity among the students of Victoria University of Wellington has spiralled upwards. If a list of the most successful mobile apps by Teks was to be made right now, this one will feature right near the top.

myVUWSA is a university app for students

The Concept Behind myVUWSA

 

When the representatives of UNIFYNZ Limited got in touch with us and outlined the idea of myVUWSA, we were immediately hooked. The campus life of students typically tend to be hectic – and this was one app (if we could make it in the right way) that could make things a lot simpler for them. From academics to general campus tours, the app idea included everything.

myVUWSA offers real-time updates and information to users

“I got to say this, the students at Victoria University are fortunate to have an app like this to refer to at any time. We made a conscious effort to make myVUWSA a fully customized academic organizer app – that would actually be of help to everyone on the university campus. If only I had something like this during my student life!”

Hussain Fakhruddin, CEO, Teknowledge Software

– Hussain Fakhruddin (CEO, Teknowledge Mobile Studio)

 

There was indeed a bit of nostalgia about our respective college lives, when we first heard about the idea of myVUWSA. If anything, that feeling spurred us on to make it one of our best mobile apps ever. We provided the free app quote within a day of UNIFYNZ contacting us. The project was started soon, and was completed in three weeks flat.

 

Making myVUWSA A Multi-Platform App

myVUWSA offers easy reminders of academic deadlines

“Nearly all the students at Victoria University, Wellington, owned smartphones. The catch was, we had to make sure that the app was available to everyone – and leaving out any mobile platform would have left a gap. iOS was, of course, an automatic choice, and we got optimized Android and Blackberry versions of the app prepared as well.”

– Chief Spokesperson, UNIFYNZ Limited

 

It’s a good thing that we had separate teams for iPhone, Blackberry and Android app development. The client, sensibly, wanted custom versions of the app for the different platforms – and we were at a position to handle this requirement. In fact, the overwhelming success of myVUWSA contributed in establishing Teknowledge as a reliable multi-platform mobile app company.

 

Working Out The App Features

 

While the idea of making a holistic students’ app is appealing, determining the exact set of features that the application should have can be a challenge. Our mobile app developers had several interaction sessions with the head of UNIFYNZ Limited, to finalize the features and functionality that would be present in the introductory version of the app (Version 1.0).

myVUWSA was released after extensive mobile app testing

“I have been dealing with app clients for close to a decade now – and can say this about the guys at UNIFYNZ: they are really committed about making their apps useful. Each and every proposed feature of myVUWSA was deliberated upon in detail, many were scrapped, and several new ideas were floated in. If the brainstorming had not been that good, the app would probably not have received this amount of appreciation.”

Hussain Fakhruddin, CEO, Teknowledge Software

– Hussain Fakhruddin (CEO, Teknowledge Mobile Studio)

 

Over time, more and more features have been added to the new versions of this free university app. Version 2.0 of myVUWSA came out in March 2013. It was a major upgrade, with new timetable views, sign-up options, and multi-device installation feature. Since then, 4 minor upgrades have also been released – the last of which made the app compatible with all iOS 7 devices.

 

“We were very much aware that a gimmicky, static app won’t be of any use to the students. The focus was always on releasing a well-researched, user-friendly app, and providing free upgrades with enhanced features at regular intervals. The professionalism and wealth of app-making experience that Hussain brought to the table was a big help.”

 

– Chief Spokesperson, UNIFYNZ Limited

 

So, How Exactly Does myVUWSA Help Students?

 

Neither the concept developers at UNIFYNZ, nor did we want to make myVUWSA just another, run-of-the-mill student information app. That’s precisely why we included a diverse array of facilities and information database (regularly updated) in the app. From reminding students about assessment submission dates and exam schedules, to enabling quick access to the university’s official Blackboard and making students aware of important announcements and updates – myVUWSA was created as a tool to serve every need of students.

myVUWSA comes with a plethora of user-friendly features

“Even the most meritorious students can get into a tangle, while trying to draw up personalized study timetables. I suggested to the client that the app should have a timetable-creation feature to organize individual academic schedules. They agreed readily, and chipped in with a few other useful inputs as well.”

Hussain Fakhruddin, CEO, Teknowledge Software

– Hussain Fakhruddin (CEO, Teknowledge Mobile Studio)

 

Things That Set myVUWSA Apart

 

“Many leading universities in the West and Down Under have dedicated academic apps for students. With all due respect to their utility, we felt that those apps have a slightly mundane, boring feel. myVUWSA was conceptualized as an app that blended in vital university calendar and academic info with other fun campus stuff. Hussain and his team of developers did a great job with it.”

 

– Chief Spokesperson, UNIFYNZ Limited

myVUWSA has a detailed campus map for students' reference

Given the large size and number of buildings in the Victoria University campus, we felt that new students would love to have built-in campus maps in the app. As such, we created three separate maps of the university campus (the emphasis was on accuracy and easy readability), and included them in the myVUWSA application.

myVUWSA shows up information on the best deals for students

Yet another consideration highlighted by the knowledgeable personnel at UNIFYNZ was that, students are invariably always on the lookout for good deals – on virtually everything (oh…those days of student-life and perpetual fund shortage!). We decided to put in information on the best deals available nearby, which students could avail of, in the app. The deals were classified under 5 different categories.

 

The Gossip Factor

 

What’s life on campus without a bit of spicy gossip? myVUWSA takes care of this too – via the built-in ‘Overheard @’ feature. Students can stay updated with the latest campus gossip – and what’s more, they can tag friends directly on the official Facebook page/thread of the university. It’s all in good fun, and it adds that extra bit of buzz about the app.

myVUWSA app has been featured at the app stores

“No student wants to get labeled as a nerd. With the ‘Overheard @’ feature of myVUWSA, students will be able to contribute…or at least…be aware of the hot-n-happening campus gossips and rumors. Not only it is a lot of fun, but I feel that it serves as a nice ice-breaker among the students too. The student community at Victoria University loved it.”

 

– Chief Spokesperson, UNIFYNZ Limited

 

From the myVUWSA application, users have the option of directly navigating to the university website/Facebook page. Our app developers and mobile UI/UX designers made it a point to ensure that the layout of the app indeed appealed to the students. The app was tested thoroughly prior to release (as is the case with all our applications), and several minor bug fix updates have been released till now. The general feedback has been great, download figures have swelled over the years, and the app continues to be a favorite among the students at Victoria University.

 

“From the very first, it was clear that UNIFYNZ was planning to make myVUWSA a really student-centric app. Clearly, they had done a lot of research about the smartphone-usage of students, as well as their day-to-day campus requirements. The app idea they had come up with was truly comprehensive, and we were happy to transform it into a nice and useful application.”

Hussain Fakhruddin, CEO, Teknowledge Software

– Hussain Fakhruddin (CEO, Teknowledge Software)

 

The myVUWSA app, by UNIFYNZ, is available for free download at https://itunes.apple.com/nz/app/myvuwsa/id510564859. The Victoria University students have given it their collective thumbs-up, and the app has been one of our biggest success stories.

 

Hussain Fakhruddin
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Hussain Fakhruddin

Hussain Fakhruddin is the founder/CEO of Teknowledge mobile apps company. He heads a large team of app developers, and has overseen the creation of nearly 600 applications. Apart from app development, his interests include reading, traveling and online blogging.
Hussain Fakhruddin
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