The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
Once again I need to begin by apologising for the lack of activity in our blog! We have had so many things happen in the last few months including the good, the bad and the ugly! You’ll understand in a moment!
I have been working incredible hard to build the Android MVP for you all to download and try for yourself. I'm very glad to announce that it's available to download on the Google Play Store.
There's still a lot of features to come in the coming weeks and months such as a new map searching function and finding followers page. The next big features I'm working on is matching you with other travellers that will be around at the same time as you. This is one of the hardest and most important features that needs developed and that's why I'm taking my time with it!
Has anyone every told you your baby is ugly? That’s exactly how I felt at the start of September when I found out Jaunt wouldn’t be getting the £10,000 of investment from TechStart. It was one of those moments when you start to question if your product is viable.
I definitely don’t think it’s a bad thing to have these thoughts because they keep you on track for achieving your end goal. If everyone gave up the second they failed at something there would be no innovation in the world! If anything Jaunt has been coming along faster than ever!
The Next Few Months
The next few months are now crucial for shaping Jaunt's future and keeping the app in development. The best thing about my situation is that I have one of the best support networks around me including other startups. These people not only motivate you to keep going but they can also open up doors to make it happen.
So what does this mean for Jaunt? Well the Android and web apps remain unaffected and we have 3 new possible options for the iOS app. I'm still running them past the team with the negitives and positives of each one. Once we have a made a decision we will be moving full steam ahead!
Google Developer Days Europe
Back at the start of September I had the privilege of being invited along to the Google Developer Days conference in Krakow, Poland by Google themselves. This was the biggest opportunity to date as I was able to share the app to a global audience with some great feedback and friendship coming from the conferenece!
The conference itself was like nothing I’d ever witnessed in my life. Google had completely transferred the brand new ICE Congress Center into what looked like a Google campus! But best of all was the people! I had the chance to speak to Sarah Allen, Technical Lead for Firebase. Firebase is the backend platform and database that the app is being built upon. Having the chance to speak to Sarah and the team was so invaluable! I even had the opportunity take part in her live codelab!
For those of you that know me, you'll understand how difficult I find it to stand up infront of people and talk! It’s been something that has haunted me for years but had never really effected me as when in your normal day to day life how often do you have to give a talk?
Espark has really helped me with this by picking me give my 60 second pitch at every opportunity possible. Earlier this month was the first of these talks for Catalyst Inc to the pupils of Methody College about myself and Jaunt to help them better understand the real world processes of starting a business. I honestly felt so much more confident in myself. It could be down to being passionate about the topic I was talking about! The pupils are part of a program called Generation Innovation where they’re split into teams and have to develop a product from idea right up to selling it to the public!
Belfast Design Week
Belfast Design Week is a grassroots, industry-led festival featuring a week-long series of events and activities that seeks to promote and celebrate Northern Ireland’s design heritage and contemporary design scene.
As part of Belfast Design week we were invited along to the launch night in the Ormeau Baths to represent the tech side of Belfast’s great digital design presence. We are also one of the 6 featured speakers at the Share 6 : Made In Northern Ireland event on the 7th November. The event seeks to explore the latest and most interesting things happening in maker culture here, "on our doorstep." At Share 6, speakers share their stories for 10 minutes each, focusing on a particular theme.
So if you’d like to come along and hear about the great ideas and products being developed right here in Belfast as well as Jaunt then please signup on the website above! Belfast Design Week has events running from the 4th - 10th of November designed not only for experienced designers but also for people with little to no idea about design! You can view all their event on the website.