Hot App From The Great White North with Visit Vancouver
Have you ever wanted to visit Vancouver, B.C. in Canada? I can say that the thought hadn’t once crossed my mind… until I stumbled across the Visit Vancouver application. After checking it out, I'm surprised to admit that Vancouver just might be the destination of my next vacation. The application, created by smashLAB on Appcelerator Titanium, is engaging and smooth; its home page features a stunning loop of video as its background, displaying live weather temperature reports for Vancouver and a menu to navigate through the multitude of features this application has to offer.
If you’d like to view full videos and a picture gallery featuring the city to get a sense of what it’s like in Vancouver, galleries are readily available under the live weather updates. The favorites feature acts with the app’s stellar organization as an optimized way to plan a vacation to Vancouver by keeping track of the venues, activities and events that you’ve marked as a favorite.
When using Visit Vancouver to plan your trip to the B.C., you can begin by deciding what you wish to center your visit around; if comfort is your primary concern, you can browse the various types of accommodations. Whether you want a hostel, campground or upscale hotel you can find a specific menu that lists the available venues. You can open a menu for each listed option to view a description of the hotel beside the options to book a room, see it on a map, visit the website of the venue or e-mail them directly; when you’ve stumbled on a place you particularly like you can add it to your list of favorites. This organization is constant through each category, allowing you to view and save your desired dining experiences, accommodations, events, activities, and means of transportation. You can also view general information about Vancouver and an online version of the Vancouver Magazine that is updated regularly.
Visit Vancouver was developed for Tourism Vancouver by smashLAB and although this is the first app that smashLAB developed, they have previously created many web properties and online campaigns; this produced the initial problem of finding a platform that would allow their in-house developers to create an application without having to work in objective-C. Eric Shelkie of smashLAB stated, “[we] tested a few out (PhoneGap, Application Craft, etc.), but I think we’ve been able to achieve a level of professionalism that would have been difficult with any of those. We think this app feels completely native, while the initial tests we ran with other ‘web view’ based platforms just didn’t measure up.” To keep track of their application’s engagement levels, the number of active users and all other user activity smashLAB has integrated the Google Analytics API to track conversion on their goal of clicks on hotel and restaurant booking buttons and referrals to member websites to determine more than the success of the app on a surface level in favor of its true metric of success: bringing visitors to Vancouver.
The Visit Vancouver App is available for free on the iPad here. So download it and check it out and maybe you'll decide to visit Vancouver soon!
You can follow smashLAB on twitter @smashLAB