Project Description

An exercise in innovation for O2 and Penrillian to generate ideas for a popular children’s app .

  • Bringing Agile software development to one of O2’s innovation teams
  • iPlay&Sing was designed and developed as an upgrade to our popular app, in a short timeframe
  • New features included a new introduction screen, musical games and interactive ‘maze’ games to encourage hand-eye coordination.
  • iPlay&Sing added to O2’s commitment to childhood personal development
“Penrillian applied Agile best-practice to manage changing development work priorities whilst providing regular weekly progress reports to satisfy our more traditional needs for progress tracking. Controlled, managed, flexible – perfect!”
Stuart Proctor, O2, Solution Designer

Background

iPlay&Sing became the exciting extension of iPlay&Learn, a bright, colourful free application for pre-school children. It was designed in just weeks through a close partnership between O2 and Penrillian. iPlay&Learn had already become extremely popular, with 90,000 users and 3.25 million games played. But the O2 team’s first experience of working with Penrillian triggered many extra exciting ideas not included in the original version. Once again, they turned to Penrillian to deliver the new iPhone / iPod Touch application: iPlay&Sing.One of the world’s largest mobile operators approached Penrillian with a brief of making it easy for customers to configure complex devices. Penrillian’s solution was a single web-based user interface for all its mobile Wi-Fi devices.

The Challenge

When O2, keen to “give back” more to its mobile community, approved another version, Penrillian was part of the subsequent brainstorm. As with version 1, only three weeks of development time was available – interspersed with three weeks for O2 trial and feedback – to convert fresh ideas into a marketable product. In this short period, responsive Agile development meant that daily changes were plotted accurately, winning ideas expanded, weekly priorities updated and frequent new iterations tested by O2.

Our brief was:

  • To further increase functionality, fun and visual appeal.
  • To develop a sing and play element, keyboard and voice-recording function.
  • To significantly enhance an existing drawing game.
  • To develop a hand-eye co-ordination maze game.
  • To launch iPlay&Sing as an upgrade rather than a new application.

Results

As intended, iPlay&Sing added considerably to O2’s commitment to childhood personal development and pre-school preparation in line with Early Years national curriculum standards. The application was given a new introduction screen, musical games and five sophisticated interactive ‘maze’ games designed to encourage hand-eye coordination.

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