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OpenStudy

Connecting students and expanding user engagement

MEV helped OpenStudy translate their unique social network into a mobile app, then helped roll out a complex virtual economy.
Services
  • Software Development
  • UI/UX Design
  • Infrastructure/DevOps
  • Mobile Development
  • QA

About OpenStudy

Founded by two professors from the University of Georgia, OpenStudy was a social network that connected middle and high school students worldwide. Students could use OpenStudy to ask questions and assist one another with subjects such as algebra, biology, and physics.

What began as an educational community evolved into a social platform where young people could freely communicate and study with friends. OpenStudy partnered with MEV to stabilize their platform, design a mobile app, and create additional revenue-building features for the platform.

Client’s Challenges

01/A Delicate, Unstable System

OpenStudy had successfully established its product/market fit and user base, and the technology it had built was immersive and innovative. OpenStudy utilized reactive programming and some unique frameworks – namely Scala and Play Framework – in their technology stack, which boosted user engagement on their platform. However, the system was highly unstable and could not process the vast amount of data being produced on the platform every day.

02/An Unusual Programming Language

OpenStudy had built a technology whose highly advanced functionality put it ahead of its time. However, the system was programmed using Scala, a programming language that required high-level engineering expertise to code. OpenStudy no longer possessed a team with the skills needed to maintain or update the system, and they struggled to find engineers capable of tackling the problem for an affordable price.

03/A Challenging Plan for Growth

OpenStudy’s goal was to transform its platform into a complex digital economy that recognized and rewarded high-performing users. They also wanted to expand their platform to a mobile app in order to create a brand-new revenue stream and further entice their user base. However, major changes to the platform could alienate users who were already happy with the current model.

What We Did

A Partnership with Mutual Gain

OpenStudy initially partnered with MEV to stabilize its platform’s performance. However, MEV did not initially possess engineers skilled in Scala. Determined to help OpenStudy evolve its software, MEV agreed to take over OpenStudy’s system, and our developers learned how to code with Scala. Through our partnership with OpenStudy, we expanded our expertise.

Our developers became proficient and set out to stabilize OpenStudy’s system. As our partnership progressed, we grew OpenStudy’s platform by developing a mobile app and various other revenue streams.

A Successful Platform Expansion

MEV built a mobile application to accompany OpenStudy’s web platform, broadening OpenStudy’s reach and increasing user engagement. By translating their web platform into a native mobile app, we enabled users to interact with the OpenStudy platform more easily and with greater frequency. We also spent time testing and redesigning the app’s interface and functionality to make it consistent with OpenStudy’s web platform.

The team adapted OpenStudy’s menu structure and header design to improve site navigation, improved old designs while maintaining brand identity, and updated the site to be retina compatible. Along with the mobile app, we successfully developed a digital economy on OpenStudy’s platform to benefit high-level users.

An Easy Transition to Digital Economy

MEV released the new elements of the platform in several stages. During the process, MEV ensured that critical elements of OpenStudy’s old platform remained consistent. The gradual rollout of the new features and the digital economy allowed users to navigate the changes with little issue, helping OpenStudy to retain its core customer base.

Results

  • Grew community of users by making the software mobile accessible
  • Opened revenue streams with a successful virtual economy
  • Increased engagement by making software faster and easier to use
  • Caught the eye of another company in the same field and was acquired
  • Formed a partnership with mutual benefits

Technologies

mongodb

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