(All development blog posts are only available in english. And sorry, you can not test the app without a ticket for the festival.)

 

About the OMR Festival

The annual OMR Festival is the event of the year for marketing pros and aficionados. Part expo, conferences, Masterclasses, side events and, of course, party, the OMR Festival is the centerpiece of OMR. Since it’s inception six years ago, the two-day event taking place in February or March has grown from 200 visitors in year one to over 26K visitors 2016. Attendance is a must for marketing makers who want to network with other professionals and stay up-to-date in an ever-changing industry. In 2018 OMR reached

  • 40,000 Attendees
  • 300+ Speakers
  • 300+ Exhibitors
  • 120
  • It’s huge ;-D

300+ Speakers (Watch the Youtube video instead)

OMR Festival App 2018

We have been created the OMR app for the last 3 festivals. Key features of the 2018’s app are:

  • Timetable: to include schedules for the conference, Expo Stages, Masterclasses & Guided Tours
  • My Plan: to create your own schedule of Masterclasses, Keynote or Guided Tours including reminders
  • Networking: connection with other festival visitors and writing a private message in the festival’s chat (What’s App like)
  • Ticket Scanner: to get in touch with other festival visitors by scanning their tickets. Just give your phone a shake and scan away! Scan the badge and export your scanned contacts
  • Social Feed: to stay up-to-date on the latest #OMR18 social (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram).
  • Festival Map: Not sure where to go? Let us help with an app map of OMR18 exhibitors, stages and halls.
  • Details for all sponsors, partners, exhibitors
  • Conference Liveticker: the 11Freunde liveticker.
  • Social Network Connections: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Xing
  • Feedback for speeches and master classes
  • Many more: Side Events, party list

Timetable: (Watch the Youtube video instead)

Here is the link to the OMR Festival App page.

Development Challenge

As the OMR team asked us to create again the app for 2018 and presented their feature requirements, it became clear, that we have to find a new and more efficient way to create the OMR app.

We came to the result, that the effort for creating the apps natively twice for iOS and Android was too huge. We have a lot of experience in creating native apps and we have also some experience in Xamarin and Ionic2, but none of them were suitable (for effort or technical reasons) for this project. At the end we decided to go with React Native and specifically with Expo as fast development environment and Firebase as the backend.

Here are some of the reasons which impressed us the most:

  • Developing an app with Expo is so good, that we cannot describe this in words here 🙂
  • We have a cross platform code coverage of 99% (!). Just the handling of push notifications is different.
  • We decided to use the firebase notification mechanism for sending push notifications (because we have sent a lot of them: 250,000+ during the festival).
  • Expo and React Native provides so many fast and easy solutions for our problems during the development process.
  • Firebase as a backend and the sync mechanism is very impressive.
    Client: We decided to use the firebase web sdk and not the rnfirebase package in the client, because it was feasible for us and we don’t want to loose the expo development possibilities. (We recommend to have a look on Brent’s answer regarding Expo integration of firebase).
    Backend: Developing the backend on firebase was also an eye opening process. You can do so much more with less code…

Conclusion

The first question we always get, when someone reads the feature list: „You built all this features for a two day event? Really?“ And the answer is very easy: yes, it was worth it!

In mid of 2017 we were not very experienced in developing with react native, in our eyes the platform was  not mature enough. This has changed dramatically since then. Our decision to go with Expo, React Native and  Firebase was one of the best decisions we ever made and it becomes our default development stack for our apps (not only event apps).

Special thanks to the OMR team for such an event and the great work together.

Here are some of the screens: