We were approached to work with the UK's largest provider of online walking guides to produce an innovative cross platform app. The project had a number of big challenges - offline mapping, account management and multiple platforms / devices...

We approached the project as we always do. Firstly, by producing a specification document, always ensuring lots of communication, having the occassional meeting and mostly by making sure that the app met all the objectives the client set. We believe by building a simple to use cross platform app Walkingworld can make their 1000's of walks available to an even bigger audience and app will their service to now be used anywhere and by anyone.

Cross Platform Mobile Apps

Walkingworld App

The Project Brief

We were approached to take the Walkingworld 'walk catalogue' and to make it available to existing and new subscribers via an app. A common (and quite obvious!) problem with needing an app for walking is that the user may not have an internet connection available. This immediately rules out the ability to use the 'traditional' mapping technologies like Google maps. This presented quite a large challenge - how do you take a map, at various levels of detail, and store it offline allowing users to access it when theres no connection available?

Also the completed app would need to connect to an existing web service and work with the data 'as is' to produce all the inputs and outputs the application would require. The Walkingworld web patform already used an API developed in house for the 'back end' of the website, so by tapping into this we could remove redundancy and use one source for everything.

Cordova software solutions

What the app does...

The app works by utlising a web service to push and pull all its data and a unique and bespoke offline mapping method for handling the display of OS maps.

This offline mapping method caches a map at various levels / zooms and allows the map to be assembled later and in real time on a users device, removing the need for an internet connection when navigating the map of the walk.

The app can display a users direction of travel and allows them to easily navigate between waypoints on a walk with associated information available for each of them.

The finished app

The solution allows existing subscribers to access and save walks for use offline and allows Walkingworld to utilise another method to increase their customer base.

The hallmark of a good app is how simple it appears to the end-user, however complicated it may be under the surface. Sapere developed an app to bring our library of walking routes to mobile devices and there were plenty of hidden complications, including in the management of our members' status and preferences and in the interface with the Ordnance Survey map server. The team at Sapere tackled the challenges with thoroughness and a dedication to the importance of the user experience, and worked well with our database developer in reaching elegant solutions. This is the sort of development partner you want on your side and I have no hesitation in recommending them.

The app is available in both iTunes and the Google Play Store.

The Technology Platform

The following technologies and platforms were used:

The Realised Benefits

These are the benefits to Walkingworld and the app users...

  • Better visibility for Walkingworld by having an app in both the IOS and Google app stores
  • Accessible anywhere walking 'companion' app for existing Walkingworld subscribers