Sencha Touch Customer Spotlight: Vimeo
Vimeo is a respectful community of creative people who are passionate about sharing the videos they make. Our mission is to provide the best tools and highest quality video in the universe. To celebrate the awesome community that has gotten us to this point, we put together a two-day festival and awards show in October 2010, where we celebrated the best of online video.
Over the two days, we brought together a group of top panelists in the fields of film, video and Web to give various talks and workshops at several locations near Vimeo HQ, at the IAC building in New York City. In addition, we had many smaller events that helped Vimeo community members discover new videos and talk to each other IRL. A big part of the community interaction was facilitated by our use of IAC's video wall where we were constantly running some of our favorite videos.
To help attendees keep track of all of the events and to make the festival an interactive experience, we developed a mobile app using Sencha Touch, which ended up becoming an essential tool for festival attendees. The app allowed attendees to check-in to the video wall, "like" or add the currently playing video to their "watch later album," view their schedule, view event details, add events to their "favorites" (a personalized schedule), view all of the nominated videos for the festival awards and even see a map of the area with directions to the various venues.
Experience Vimeo’s Sencha Touch app on your mobile device or WebKit browser. View App
“Sencha Touch gave us the benefits of native app-like performance and user interface but without the limitations of slower development time...”
We were initially attracted to Sencha Touch because it allowed us to deliver a native app experience on mobile devices without limiting us to a single platform. We knew that people attending the festival would own all types of mobile devices, such as Apple, Nokia, Motorola, and we wanted to make sure our app was available to anyone with a modern web browser.
In addition to cross platform support, we discovered that Sencha Touch gave us incredible development speed. The Sencha Touch framework comes with a number of features like built-in support for Models, Views, and Controllers. Once we had our Models and Views hooked up, the view was updated automatically when any data changed, without having to worry about manually redrawing the information. This made features of our app like "Favorites" a breeze to build since all we had to do was link our two data models together, and the views would update automatically!
Using Sencha Touch, we were able to build our original feature set so quickly that we added several features including a full interactive map, personal schedule customizations, and even video viewing. Sencha Touch comes with full support for Google Maps API, so it was relatively trivial to get a map view rendered, drop in some points of interest (in our case, the location of events), and even provide tool tips and walking directions. In addition, by using Sencha Touch to build a web app, we were able to offer our users instant access to all of the awards ceremony videos by using our awesome Universal Player to embed videos right in the page. Plus, any changes or updates we needed to make to the app, such as bug fixes or schedule updates, were automatically available to the attendees.
All in all, Sencha Touch gave us the benefits of native app-like performance and user interface but without the limitations of slower development time and application submission delays which come with building native apps.
Our Advice to New Developers
Get involved! Sencha Touch has a very vocal and thriving community of developers who are there to help you get started. The easiest way to learn something new is to just start building it, so dust off that napkin with the idea for the ToDo app you've been meaning to write, fire up your favorite text editor, and get coding. The community is here to help you.
Using Sencha Touch to build our app gave us such a huge head-start on the development cycle that we were able to add more new features, even though we were on a tight schedule. We used Sencha Touch to handle all of the low-level bits of code, so we could focus on the fun part of actually building the app to do everything we wanted. The best part is that it works on any device with a modern browser because it's developed using web-standard technologies. We're incredibly happy with the application we delivered to the attendees of our first festival and awards ceremony, and I'm 100% positive they loved it too.