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Slush PWA

Slush 2018 PWA

For Slush 2018, we created a progressive web app to improve the event experience. PWA’s are web-based applications that offer an efficient and flexible alternative to native mobile apps. The technology is still evolving, but we believe it will become a dominant tech for building apps in the near future.

World’s leading startup event

How do you make a world-class startup event better year after year? This is what we ask ourselves every time we sit down with the Slush team to plan for the next event.

Luckily for us, our friends on the other side are a forward-looking bunch, who are willing to push the boundaries with new concepts and technologies. So, this time, we softly exploited the situation by introducing the idea of creating a PWA.

A progressive web app would provide efficient development for us and the look and feel of a native app for the users. The Slush team liked the idea, so we built one for them.

How to use the service

Go to app.slush.org on your mobile browser. Use the app in the browser or add it to
your home screen.

iOS

Press the share button on the bottom of your browser. Find and press the icon “Add to home screen”.

Android

The browser will prompt you to “Add Slush App to
Home Screen”.

Concept

The Slush PWA is a browser-based application that allows agile development and provides a seamless user experience. The 20,000 tech-heads could build their own schedule, bookmark their favorite speakers and restaurants, and just make the most of their experience at Slush.

Our solution made the experience more interactive and fluid, allowed us to react fast to changes, and made it possible to reach visitors with timely notifications or messages.

Technology

So, what are these progressive web apps all about? Instead of having to download the app from an app store, the user can just visit the URL and save the app to their home screen. Using the service worker API, the PWA has the look and feel of a native app while working in the browser. This makes it device-independent, easy to use and fast to maintain.

The Slush app uses WordPress as its backend, making content input as easy as for any WordPress site. The content is then fetched through WordPress Rest API to the React + Redux -powered app. Smart caching in the PWA makes it fast and offline-friendly, like any native app. The Slush App was also integrated to the Slush platform through Google’s Firebase login, and meetings made there could be fetched to My Slush.

Design

For the app to work as a Slush visitor’s best buddy, we wanted to make it like an extension of the brain. Slush’s familiar look and feel were converted into a design optimized for on-the-go use. Adding speakers, talks, and lunches to the user’s own agenda was made simple in every view.

The dark theme makes the app pleasant for the eye and reduces battery usage. Sharp details in the UI, reminiscent of lasers piercing the foggy air at Messukeskus, guide the user through every interaction. Smooth transitions add that little extra to make it feel like any native app ever could.

Results

The Slush app was used heavily before and during the event. It had almost 30 000 unique visitors, which is crazy given that there is only room for 20 000 people at the event. The app got over a million page views and the average session duration was over 11 minutes. The bounce rate was only 21,3 %. Events, speakers and restaurants were added to My Slush over 78 000 times.

Key stats from 1.12. – 5.12.2018

29 000+ unique visitors
137 000+ sessions
1 000 000+ pageviews
21% bounce rate
11 min avg. session duration
78 000+ events

Project team

Samuli Lindberg

Samuli Lindberg

Lead Designer

samuli.lindberg@evermade.fi

Tuulikki Laine

Tuulikki Laine

Developer

tuulikki.laine@evermade.fi