The OpenArc mobile team partnered with Pittsburgh NBC affiliate WPXI and Cox Media Group to develop The End Zone, a mobile app that provides users with high school football scores, news and video. The app serves as a companion to WPXI’s long-running Skylights program, but the team actually developed the code to allow for white labeling, making The End Zone part of a network that also includes Cox Media Group stations in Charlotte, Seattle, Orlando and Jacksonville.
The End Zone was the first OpenArc project to use Xamarin.Forms, a cross-platform tool that allows developers to build for both iOS and Android from a shared codebase. There were time considerations at play – the release of the initial version of the app was timed to the beginning of the high school football season – and Xamarin.Forms proved a valuable asset under those conditions. In fact, the increased efficiency led to the project coming in a full 50% under budget.
This started out as a seat-of-the-pants project with an imposing deadline, and we were able to use that energy as fuel to innovate. We finished with time and fresh ideas to spare.
Pete Bruns, Director of Engineering, OpenArc
Since this isn’t the kind of thing that usually makes it into a school’s budget, it was gratifying to discover a simple, scalable solution for partner stations with such a high content yield for football fans.
Xamarin.Forms makes prototyping a cross-platform mobile app infinitely easier. (And a lot cheaper.) We hear John Fedko loves it.