InPost application - the app of the year success story

Sep 17, 2020

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business

What Does it Take to Develop an App of the Year?

Iteo

Aleksandra Trachim

Content Marketing Manager

InPost mobile application created by iteo won 1st prize in Mobile Trends Awards!

This app is a native solution developed by the iteo team, with a total of 3 million downloads and also a number 1 in app stores in Poland. It helps InPost customers track their parcels. The app is especially appreciated by the users for the innovative functionality of remote Parcel Locker opening.

Mobile Trends Awards is an annual gala for entrepreneurs who introduced modern technologies into their business operations. With over 9 years of history, Mobile Trends Conference is called the Oscars of the digital industry in Poland. It is an event to be for all companies and brands that use mobile applications, innovative websites and other IT products to make their customers’ lives easier.

This year our mobile app for InPost (one of the biggest, most appreciated and acknowledged courier companies in Poland) won the main prize being highly rated by the competition jury. At the same time, it also was granted first place in its category which was “Services”.

For InPost that night was very successful, as it won 3 prizes in total. Now, we would like to share a secret with you. This article will reveal how to develop an app of the year.

InPost – business goals and needs

InPost is a leading logistics brand in Poland. One of the main reasons is that they offer innovative services, including Parcel Lockers. They are parcel collecting spots available 24/7 that don’t require employees to operate them.

The goal of collaboration between iteo and InPost was to develop a mobile application for allowing the users to handle their parcels. In the future, the project is intended to grow by adding new functionalities and constant updates.

Another important goal was to completely give up text messages with parcel pickup codes. This solution was highly ineffective cost-wise (InPost was sending millions of text messages daily!) and also was risky in terms of potential frauds.

The client came to iteo with a clear plan – they wanted a flawless mobile app for their services. Good preparation before the beginning of the project was particularly crucial because the iteo team knew exactly what they needed to do.

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UX and UI design

The design process began with Product Workshops. The assumption was that they would last one day, but the client asked to extend them for another day in order to refine the functionality. The application prototype was prepared on the basis of the scope determined during the workshop. It was assessed internally by the InPost team. The result of these activities was the creation of MVP (minimum viable product) that included basic and most important functionalities.

After creating the second prototype (based on MVP), the iteo team designed UX for parcel tracking and other side components of the application – only those that represented business value for InPost were implemented. In the second version, the structure of the application remained unchanged, but it was redesigned according to the company’s brand book, including color consistency and the use of new fonts.

A brand hero called Mat was also designed. It is a character that looks like a parcel, but its main purpose is to communicate with the users.

Currently, cooperation in this area consists of ad hoc consultations and engaging UX or product designers only when necessary.

Useful functionalities appreciated by critics and users

The app includes many features that InPost customers adore:

  • Parcel tracking – allows checking the status and location of the parcel
  • Remote Parcel Locker opening – a mode for opening the locker without touching the computer screen
  • Order history – an archive of all previous parcels
  • InPost spots map – shows the location of all Parcel Lockers and other InPost offices
  • News display – for reading about new functionalities and technical breaks

Thanks to the cooperation of iteo developers and designers with the InPost team, the application for both Android and iOS gave InPost clients a way to significantly speed up the process of parcel pickup. This way they made their service even more convenient to use.

Details of collaboration – process and workflow

We started working together in June 2018 and then the first stage of version 1 production started. It was released in April 2019, while the version number 2 was live in November 2019.

The project included the development of two native mobile applications for Android and iOS devices. The backend was coded in Java. For Android, the app was written with Kotlin Framework, while for iOS we used Swift Framework. We used many great libraries to extend the possibilities of each framework.

Collaboration with InPost was led according to Agile and SCRUM methodology. We began with our original work tool which is Product Workshops. Also, we often met up with the client to create and clarify the concept of the product and its functionalities. During the project, sprints are held every 2 weeks.

The QA procedure in the project was done with automatic and manual tests based on cases we listed at the beginning of the project. All testing parties were obliged to check the whole list before releasing each subsequent version of the application.

Innovation – remote Parcel Locker opening

This functionality is definitely something innovative when it comes to the logistics industry. Implementation was anticipated from the beginning of our collaboration, and it was shared with the users with the app’s version 2 release. Remote locker opening fulfills the business goal directly because it allows the users to quickly collect their packages which means that InPost can deliver even more of them.

The client wished that the process of parcel collecting was as similar as possible in the mobile application and on the Parcel Locker. The goal was to simplify the process for people who already knew it from Parcel Lockers. For this exact reason, the arrangement of buttons is quite similar but some elements had to be cut off because smartphone screens are much smaller than computer screens in Parcel Lockers.

The process of remote parcel collecting is strictly designed to not interrupt the client’s system. That’s very important because some of the solutions we considered could overload the InPost system with too many requests per second. 

Remote Parcel Locker’s opening functionality was highly praised by InPost clients. They are the leader of logistic services in Poland and their engagement in introducing better and more innovative solutions is appreciated by the users. Also, their attentiveness to client satisfaction is undeniable.

Outcome

The result is a simple, intuitive and modern mobile application for Android and iOS. It allows customers to track shipments, open Parcel Lockers remotely without queuing and entering verification codes, as well as to keep up to date with the latest news or technical breaks.

The first version of the application was created from the very beginning – both on the development and design side. The second version received additional functionalities and redesign.

With over 100,000 users using the application every day, almost 100% encounter no problems. App Store and Google Play ratings are around 4.5 stars, which is a great result considering the number of people using it every day. Both versions of the application for a long time remained in the first place in Google and Apple stores.

Google Play downloads: +1mln

App Store downloads: +1mln

Testimonials

“iteo has created with us the application to collect and track InPost parcels deliveries. One of the main tasks of iteo during our cooperation was to create the UX and UI design of the application. Iteo has demonstrated the User’s understanding and is familiar with industry standards, which has allowed creating transparent and intuitive User paths. The provided design makes the application memorable while maintaining the simplicity of solutions.

During the entire development process, we could count on the full commitment and professionalism of all team members, and their proactive attitude has allowed us to implement many interesting solutions. We recommend iteo as a competent partner who met our expectations and conducted the project within the scope.” – Izabela Karolczyk-Szafrańska, Marketing Director of InPost

From Google Play and App Store:

  • “Very cool. Notifications, shipment status, easy and intuitive operation. New useful features are added with every recent update. Very helpful application and so far in my opinion bugs-free. Indispensable for me as a person using InPost services. I would recommend it.”
  • “An example of a perfect Android app. Everything works as it should, and the design of the application is stunning.”
  • “Application – a revelation;) constantly updated shipment status, push up notifications when the package is already in the parcel locker. The shipment is much better tracked than the number received by e-mail. Great, keep it up! Have a nice day at InPost and everyone working there!!!”
  • “Simple interface, intuitive control, no problems, and above all with jamming touch panels on some “cabinets”, displaying a QR code, it is a savior. It’s worth downloading because it’s a good application.”
  • “Application is the luxury we deserve! 4 packages collected in just over a minute!”
  • “Such apps should be the standard at courier companies.”

And that’s all, folks!

So now you know how to develop an app of the year. We are proud that our product developed for and with InPost is so appreciated by the clients and industry specialists. Creating viable, extraordinary software is our passion. Winning competitions like Mobile Trends Awards is proof that our products present certain value and quality.

If you would like to cooperate with us – don’t hesitate to send us a message. We will gladly discuss all the possibilities with you. Let us develop a mobile app or a website that will fulfill your business goals and give your clients a positive experience.