Don’t Pass Up Deck Pass – The Application for Swimmers Everywhere
It’s 2012 and summer’s approach is piquing excitement for an exciting summer of swimming action! To quench your thirst for the thrills only experienced once every four years, USA Swimming- the National Governing Body for the sport of swimming in the United States - is releasing an updated version of their mobile app, Deck Pass, developed in partnership with Statera and created on Appcelerator Titanium.
Of the near 300,000 members of USA Swimming, 80,000 are using Deck Pass. Available for the Android, iPad and iPhone, Deck Pass is the ideal application for those involved in the swimming community. Deck Pass currently allows swimmers to keep track of their times and goals for various events, automatically updating the times of USA Swimming members. It also provides a means to incentivize swimmers by awarding users with patches upon completing certain accomplishments. The patch system works a bit like achievements do on the Xbox, allowing you to share your accomplishments with friends; these friends can connect to you via Deck Pass or Facebook, as the app has the cool feature of allowing you to share your times and to show off your patch-bling at your discretion. Coaches using Deck Pass can also offer patches to incentivize their team by using them as rewards for consistent attendance or marked improvement. Deck Pass also provides those interested in the sport with news on the endeavors of the top swimmers in the U.S. And although Deck Pass currently offers a great bundle to the swimming community, it’s about to offer even more.
USA Swimming has added several new features to help you follow the action. The majority of Deck Pass users are tweens using the application to better their times and connect with their swimmer friends; but it’s an app for everyone that’s sure to see an expansion of their user-base with the new release. The new Deck Pass has four new core functionalities:
- List of events
- Live results
- Time standards
- Use of QR Scanner to give patches for event attendance
This will include photo galleries from top competitions as well as athlete bios; and although users won’t be able to watch the Olympic Trials races that are televised, they will have access to streaming video of most of the qualifying rounds. App users will also have access to a steady supply of new content created by USA Swimming such as behind-the-scenes content like interviews with the swimmers and news articles.
But the meager asking price of $1.99 will get you more than just a tool for the summer of 2012. USA Swimming offers these new features for some of the largest events throughout subsequent years, including the U.S. Open, the Phillips66 National Championships and AT&T Winter Nationals. For these events, Deck Pass Plus offers streaming video of all heats, including the finals.
To understand how the app works, we talked to the developers of the application, Statera. Statera talked to us about their experience creating Deck Pass Plus with Appcelerator Titanium. Statera has maintained the database for USA Swimming for years- data for swimmers, coaches and officials including over 60 million swim times on Microsoft .NET and a Microsoft SQL Server database. According to Statera, it was a simple matter to use Appcelerator Titanium, which acted as an apt crossover language from .NET and Titanium allowed for the same base code to be used for Android and iOS versions of the app.
In addition to the Microsoft SQL database, the video streams from various data providers. News, photos, videos and other such content are served to the app through a content management system on the USA Swimming site.
The app utilizes native features like social networking, video and native User Interface such as scrolling. Statera has revealed their intention to release updates, some of which include coach team management and official’s evaluations at meets and others that will utilize geolocation and map features.
You can download Deck Pass for the iPhone and iPad here or for the Android here.