The Apple Watch was launching in the UAE in 4 weeks and Abu Dhabi Media Group’s (ADMG) Al-Ittihad newspaper, a leading daily Emirati newspaper, needed an app for their campaign to coincide with the launch. Apple Watch apps are powered and controlled by their iPhone counterparts and as Al-Ittihad did not have an iPhone app, Al-Ittihad needed one developed in the same time frame as well. We rounded up the members of our SpecialOps team and got ready for some fun.
Working closely with our counterparts at Advance.ae (ADMG’s newly formed digital agency) OAB worked extended hours around the clock to quickly execute our Discovery + Preliminary Design Phase, beginning with rapid use case and persona creation followed by rapid hi-fidelity wireframe prototype creation.
Through our Discovery + Preliminary Design Phase we were able to uncover an experience that leverages natural and organic multi-touch controls for navigation to the news of interest to the user, as well as, PUSH notifications to deliver very specific categories of news to the user, which are also control through an organic experiential mechanism. We began to code the experience, while simultaneously refining and enhancing it during our SpecialOps Design + Engineering Sprints.
Building upon and accentuating the experience of the iPhone app, the Apple Watch app served as a mechanism for delivery of rich notifications, as well as, the consumption of top news headlines according to the user’s indicated preferences.
From a technical architecture standpoint, the app was written with Symfony 2 PHP and leverages MongoDB for it’s database. This is served by Apache 2 from Amazon Web Services.