Over the last decade, we’ve changed leadership, structure, and product – but what hasn’t changed is our values. Here are 5 of our favorites:
This year we deployed our Android SMS gateway app — FrontlineSync — to public beta. We decided to build FrontlineSync to make it easier for our users to connect the power of FrontlineSMS to the GSM network. Connecting to the mobile network can be a barrier to users, so we wanted to build a resilient and easy to use platform that would work everywhere.
Starting today, we’re making it even easier to engage, everywhere. We’d like to introduce you to FrontlineSync, our first, free Android app, available now on the Google Play Store. FrontlineSync turns any Android phone into a gateway - meaning that users can now use local phone numbers to send, receive, and manage SMS, and - for the first time - missed calls using FrontlineCloud and FrontlineSMS.
We recently completed a team retreat, in which we discussed our strategic vision for the future of our Frontline products. You'll see a number of major improvements coming throughout 2014 to our products. We've even created a web page so you can keep track of them over time: New Features and Updates in FrontlineCloud. Back in the office, we did a short, 1-week improvement sprint and challenged our developer team to make as many useful improvements as they could in that time. We're impressed with their output, and we think you'll find the below improvements will make the application even easier for you to use.
We want to say thank you to all of our users and supporters for a tremendous and inspiring 2013. Your ideas, input, and investments helped us achieve so many accomplishments over the past year: we topped 100,000 downloads with FrontlineSMS. We launched FrontlineCloud. We received a Google Impact Award for our work with our partner Landesa to secure land rights for 80,000 families in India.
Landesa and FrontlineSMS are delighted to welcome and share the announcement today of a US $1.5m Google Global Impact Award, which will enable them to use mobile technology to transform the way that the government in the Indian state of Odisha helps landless families gain secure rights to their land and homes.
In the aftermath of devastating Typhoon Haiyan, we're working with networks of aid agencies to support the international response any way we can - but we know that the first and most important responders are already in the Philippines.
A few weeks ago, we were invited by the Knight Foundation to join with other Knight News Challenge winners and discuss the various successes and challenges faced by our organizations. It was a terrific opportunity to recognize that many start-ups and small organizations go through nearly identical growing pains. The meeting was more than group therapy; our sessions provided some key insights into how different teams have tackled similar problems in their own contexts.
Here at FrontlineSMS, we’ve been making software for a long time. When we first released Version 2 of our software, a little over a year ago, we were one of a few SMS management platforms available- one of even fewer that was free and open source. At the time, we were proud to have around 25,000 downloads and an active user community. You can imagine our surprise when we checked our download numbers last week and learned that FrontlineSMS has been downloaded more than 100,000 times- more than 75,000 times in a little over a year. We were so excited, we got a cake. You have to understand, when things get serious at FrontlineSMS, we get serious about getting a cake.
Here at FrontlineSMS, we love data. Like, a lot. If data had its own Facebook page, we’d ‘like’ it and if we took a picture with data out one night, we’d probably make it our profile picture. Data empowers, and we’re all about empowerment o/. In fact, to empower people is the why for the what we do. One thing we’re always wanting to know, of course, is how we are doing. Well we SMSed our friend data to find out – Welcome to the 2013 FrontlineSMS survey results post!