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Designing and shipping an event discovery app

Changing the way we discover events in Paris.

Expertise

Product design & Development

Platforms

Mobile

Discovering events in a big city

If you live in a big city or like us in Paris, you know there is always a ton of things to do every week and it's still a pain to know what to do in the city. A lot of apps have tackled this issue in the past and only a few have stayed. Hugh Malkin wrote a great article called « Why no one has solved event discovery » where he explains why event as a content type is really tricky. People end up using Facebook while agreeing it is quite a mess.

Madely doesn’t believe scrolling a list of images and text is a great way to discover events. Most of the time it will take a fraction of a second for our brain to decide if something is interesting or not. But does it makes sense?

Challenge

Design and build an immersive event discovery app around videos

Curating venues and events

Madely is not about big events or mainstream venues. It's about showing the alternative Paris. We asked 200 people to list places they would recommend for every category (Concert, club) and we picked the top 100. That list of venues would be the foundation for the events curated by Madely.

Concert

Floréal Belleville

Bar, restaurant and art gallery in the heart of Belleville

Club

La Java

Underground club and venue for live gigs and DJ sets.

Cultural

Le Point Éphémère

Riverside arts center with an airy exhibition space.

Art gallery

Galerie du PopUp

Small art gallery in the heart of Paris

Building a tool to help optimize the process

For the launch, we wanted to make sure the app would work without requiring any work from the venues. We needed a way to speed up the process of adding events and videos to the database. To do so, we developed a quick tool that simplifies the process of getting events by directly scrapping the needed data from a Facebook events URL.

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Building an MVP in React Native with Expo

After deciding the key features of the app, we picked the most efficient stack : Firebase and Expo. With Firebase we were able to quickly develop an MVP without having to set up a complete backend solution. Expo is a framework and a platform for universal React applications. It is a set of tools and services built around React Native and native platforms that help you develop, build, deploy, and quickly iterate on iOS, Android, and web apps from the same JavaScript codebase.

Designing the experience and feeling of the app

Madely is different from other event discovery app. Like an event, the interface is playful and colorful. As the main font we picked Space Mono, a monospaced font really showing the alternative spirit of Madely.

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Immersive and fun experience

The home tab allows you to quickly navigate between videos of events happening today and categories like Concerts and Clubbing. If you tap on a category you access to a fullscreen video feed where you can navigate through event using up and down swipe. The experience is fully immersive and distinct from any other event discovery app. Each event is a 12s video clip looping with an overlay of all the information you need to know about the event and the possibility to buy a ticket when needed.

Showing what’s happening around you

A common use case when searching for things to do is « What can I do now, around me ». Whenever It's a Saturday night with your friends looking to quickly get a feeling of what’s going on tonight around you or on a Sunday walk searching for something to do, the map is here for you. One tap on the pin opens a fullscreen video of the event with all the information you need to know.

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Private Beta and Features coming soon

Madely has been in private Beta for 1 month now. Two features were mostly asked by the users and will be implemented soon. Inside the fullscreen video feed, if an event picks your interest you will be able to save it for later by tapping on the heart icon. If you are inside a category you will be able to easily filter the event by time: Today, this week, this weekend.

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