October 26, 2011
If you were at The Combine tech conference last week, you might have seen someone dressed as an ear of corn ushering attendees to the bar. You might also have seen this mysterious “Cornzilla” in the customized event app built by WhimMill.
“We use push notifications to make it a little more playful,” says cofounder Chris Borland, referring to messages about where Cornzilla was. “We really want people to have fun.”
WhimMill creates iPhone and Android apps for festivals, concerts, and events, as part of its Rendezville suite. They provide information on artists, speakers, or films; an interactive schedule, so you can “favorite” events; and a map of all venues.
Event organizers just input content using WhimMill’s WordPress plugin. Branded apps cost about $800 – with a customized app icon, banner, and colors – and can take as little as 24 hours for Borland’s team to build from their template. WhimMill also plans to offer a generic Rendezville event app for $99.
One of WhimMill’s strengths is clearly design. Instead of representing places only with pins on a map, their Combine app used little robots with explosions. They also try to stand out from competitors like DoubleDutch’s HYVE apps with quick WordPress input, a low price, and a focus on small and medium events. A chat function in their apps would make them stand out even more.
WhimMill has also built location-based social games like HereWolf and WW Zombie, and they plan to integrate game elements into future Rendezville apps to add to the networking and fun.
Besides The Combine, where WhimMill showcased at Tech Cocktail’s Bloomington mixer, they have also built apps for the BTownLotus music and arts festival. Look for another Rendezville app at January’s PRIDE Film Festival in Bloomington.
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