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Mobile Application (iOS, Android)

A tool that connects music and people on the go, on any device

The Challenge

Plagued by overall instability and unreliable presentation on Android devices, the old SOCAN mobile app couldn’t be relied on to perform consistently. Add to that a less-than-stellar user experience and it’s easy to see why the app was struggling to find a receptive audience. Early feedback included problems logging in on Android devices, difficulties navigating the app and unexpected logout issues.

SOCAN prides itself on being at the technological forefront of the music licensing space, so it gave the go ahead for a full redevelopment. This time the app would need to deliver reliable performance on Android and iOS platforms.

And as with all of its digital properties, SOCAN placed an emphasis on security of its new mobile app. That was driven by a commitment to protecting the data of SOCAN’s members and the many customers who use music to enrich their business.

The Solution

Having access to the current version of the app gave us a chance to see for ourselves where the front-end experience fell short. Keeping the emphasis on the app's most important functions, we modernized and simplified the user interface without straying too far from the original design. SOCAN wanted to ease the transition between versions, so any aesthetic changes had to be modest.

Likewise, upgrades to the user experience were designed to be seamless—improving legibility, streamlining information architecture and incorporating clearer navigational cues.

The biggest improvements happened on the development side. By using Angular.js and Ionic frameworks—the leading open-source mobile development tools—we created native apps for iOS and Android platforms within a fraction of the time of full-scale model development. The use of native controls and a single code base drive consistent performance on Apple iOS and Android devices—solving one of the biggest problems with the previous version of the app while keeping development costs down.

The new SOCAN mobile app integrates all of the core business workflows from before, including a music license finder, fee calculators, account management for existing members and a simple signup-process for new ones. Businesses can also get tariff applications delivered straight to their inbox, offloading a cumbersome process from SOCAN personnel.

Project Highlights
  • Bilingual UI and content
  • Integrated newsfeed
  • Calculation logic decoupled from the app and provided via RESTful APIs
  • Licence Finder tool to help members find the appropriate tariff for their needs
  • Integrated license and performance royalty calculators
  • Integrated tariff library browseable by business type
  • Account management with access to catalogue of creative works and statement history

On the surface, the new version of SOCAN’s mobile app
isn’t a radical upgrade.

But major improvements to the code stabilizes performance across both operating systems, providing a more consistent and reliable experience for all users.

The new version of the app makes it easier than ever for members to manage their account on the go. As the app’s user base grows, we hope to gather more feedback and identify new features that will add value for members, businesses and SOCAN.

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