2013 Mobile Awards

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Whereis® iPhone & Android app (Celebrity Voices release) [DRAFT]







Project Overview

In 2011, Whereis® released one of the first free iPhone navigation apps to offer spoken turn-by-turn directions. To deliver a more engaging navigation experience, in 2012/13 Whereis® added a twist to this innovative functionality with the addition of celebrity voices. The “Celebrity Voices” release offers users the choice of six iconic Australian celebrities to voice their spoken turn-by-turn instructions including; sports legends Dennis Cometti, Ray Warren and The 12th Man (Billy Birmingham) and Aussie icons Jennifer Hawkins, Dame Edna and Nick Giannopoulos as ‘The Wog Boy.’ Due to popular demand, we’ve just launched an Android version of the app.




Snr Manager: Allison Caruk
Product Manager: Scott Furey, Daniel Aron
Producers: Jessica Ellingham, Jo Jette Spurling
Designers: Matthew Sarah, Jared Bon, Sue Earl
Developers: Angus Ng, Matt Cascone, Michael Gillies, Yuan Fan, Andrew Griffiths, Tony Filipe, David Weiss, James Pott, Andrew Louth
Business Analysts: Nouman Riaz
Testers: Vincent Luong, Premkumar Arumugam, Phillip Ren, Malcolm Webster, Pritpal Kaur, Andri Purmawinata, Harmik Sardar, Shashi Srikantaiah
Analytics: Christopher Mason, Nichola Harkin
Marketing: Clare Smith, Jess Hart, Anthony D’Abaco, Hamish Butler, Damian Glass

Project Brief

In July 2011, the Whereis® iPhone app was launched with the objective of providing a tailored, innovative and user friendly navigation experience. One of the few free navigation apps offering spoken turn-by-turn directions, the Whereis® iPhone app stood out in market.
As the category evolved and competition intensified, Whereis® needed to develop an innovative change to the app functionality to:
• differentiate Whereis® from competitors in the category
• continue to give users an engaging, premium navigation experience for free
• provide the service across both iPhone and Android
• support Whereis® as an Australian brand with extensive Australian map coverage and local knowledge

Project Need

As the first Australian navigation app to offer Australian celebrities to voice spoken directions, Whereis® provides Android and iPhone users with a premium, free and easy to use navigation experience.

Built specifically for the Australian market, the app offers extensive coverage of Australia featuring the most up to date map data from Whereis® Maps. The app also boasts a series of enhanced mapping/navigation related functionality not typically found in a free navigation app.
Key app features include:
• Free voice guided turn-by-turn navigation
• Free Celebrity Voices
• Automatic re-route if you take a wrong turn
• Day & Night-mode views when navigating
• The latest and most up-to-date map data from Whereis® Maps
• Regular and automatic updates of map data
• Over 1.4 Million points of interest such as petrol stations, ATMs, car parks and more
• Quick Search tabs for commonly searched locations such as fuel, cafes, bars and more
• Search for addresses, places & businesses from Yellow Pages® such as accommodation, restaurants, doctors and more
• Simple and easy to use

User Experience

User experience was a primary focus for the Whereis® team in the development of the iPhone and Android apps.

A series of one-on-one in-depth interviews were held amongst a cross section of users, with paper based prototypes enabling prompt evaluations of key concepts. Agile design allowed useability insights to be integrated throughout the development process.

Leveraging the existing map-centric gestural interface and contextual menus, Whereis® created a two-touch system allowing users to navigate to the voice selection menu with a single touch from the home screen. The user could then quickly identify the available celebrity voices visually and with a second touch on the celebrity image, hear a sample and complete voice selection.

Bringing the celebrities to life for our users was key to an optimum “Celebrity Voices” user experience. Whereis® worked closely with the celebrities to capture the essence of their personalities and translate this into the app.

Feedback from our users illustrates the success of the app:
“I can't believe this app is free! Drove from Sydney down to Kangaroo Valley and back - Whereis didn't miss the beat! Well done.” (comment from Dario via App Store ).

“Planning a mini road trip to the shops at lunch just to use my newly downloaded @ Whereis Maps and listen to #Dennis Commetti” (comment from Sarah via Twitter).

Project Marketing

The key marketing messages for the launch of “Celebrity Voices” wrapped the novelty of celebrity voices around the primary reason for use – to help you find where you want to go.

We developed a series of marketing campaigns positioned around “Let a celebrity tell you where to go”, using a combination of mobile advertising, mobile social, press and outdoor to drive app downloads and awareness of the Celebrity Voices releases of the app.

The marketing program was an outstanding success, driving unprecedented awareness of the Whereis® brand, a record increase in daily app downloads, and a number 1 position in the App Store (for iPhone).

This category relates to applications that aid in navigation, trip management and logging.
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