[App Fridays] 'Ring A Bell' aims to make scheduling meetings and tasks more seamless
Many busy souls find it difficult to co-ordinate arrangements with friends and family – they are late, or simply forget. We are so used to those all-prevalent reminders that without them we are lost. Smartphones may have made our lives easier but have made us more dependent on technology for our day-to-day needs. So here comes ‘Ring A Bell’, an app that offers a more seamless method of setting up reminders for keeping promises and appointments.
What is it?
‘Ring A Bell’ is a mobile app that enables a user to set reminders in another person’s smartphone, and also alert him or her at the specified time. The likely uses for the app would be to remind friend or a family member to wake up in the morning or get them moving on particular tasks --visiting the doc or paying bills.
How does it work?
Users who have the app installed on their phones can set up reminders on each other’s smartphones by selecting an option from predefined templates, such as ‘wake up’, ‘doctor’s appointment’, or ‘movie time’ . They can also enter their own use case. They then have to select the person or persons, they wish to send the reminder to and select a date and time. It is also possible to set location-based reminders.
Once the user sets up the reminder, the receiver has to accept the request. For non-app users the reminder is sent as an SMS with a link to download the app. The receiver gets reminder alerts at the designated time or place (in case of location-based reminders) and he or she can accept, decline, or set the reminder for later. The reminders set in later will appear in pending notifications along with other reminders, which were not received due to any network issues.
The receiver can then send an acknowledgement by sending a response, or simply dismiss or snooze the ringing reminder. The user (who set the reminder) will receive a notification whether the recipient has accepted, declined, or responded to the reminder.
Some of the additional features of the app are
- Users can choose to send reminders in voice or text.
- They can create and edit groups and send reminders to multiple contacts in a group.
- User can block any contact if they do not wish to receive reminders from them.
- Users have the flexibility to send reminders as per the users or the recipient’s time zone.
The team behind it
Husband-wife duo Nimit Jain and Sakshi Jain co-founded 'Share2people' four months into their marriage in September 2014. Share2people works out of Noida with a team of six people, and is gradually expanding. Ring A Bell is their first product that went live on Google Playstore in Jan 2015. The startup has launched other applications as well such as 'Jain Library' and 'Mathemania'.
Sakshi is a software developer by profession and has worked with leading MNCs in the past five years. She has been working on website development using Microsoft technologies, and has an inclination towards Android and web technology. Nimit, also a software engineer, has worked on Java, Android, iOS, and automation for over five years.
Presently, they are seeding their app and have not yet monetised it. They are considering different business models such as in-app purchases and limiting certain features in the freemium version. The iOS version of the app will also be rolling out in a month or two.
What we liked
The app is simple, easy to use, and works as stated. The attention to detail and ability to customise reminders for different scenarios is interesting. For example, the feature to set a cross country meeting reminder based on the recipient’s time zones is helpful. Also, the app helps users reduce the time spent on following up and sending reminders through calls or text messages.
What could be improved?
The user interface of the app is minimalistic and can be improved further. The team confirmed that they are working on revamping the design of the app and will soon be updating a new version on the Playstore.
As of now users can attach audio recordings along with their reminders. It would be beneficial if users could also attach pictures, pdfs, word documents, or even short videos along with the reminder. Pictures and videos could make it more personalised for family members and friends, while adding pdf or word documents will add context to a business meeting reminder.
Others in the sector
The different uses cases of the app and the ability to send custom reminders to a person or group of persons are interesting. Also, the ability to add a voice note adds a personal touch and increases the appeal. The team’s focus will now be on marketing their app and gaining traction.