Reading Room launch 48-hour mobile web app challenge

08/06/2012 - London

Supporting Men’s Health Week (11-17 June 2012), international digital consultancy Reading Room is  launching a 48 hour Mobile Hack to create a mobile web app from scratch. The challenge is to design an easy way for charity Prostate Action to help men monitor their health to diagnose Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH).

BPH is the most common prostate disorder largely affecting men over 50. Not many men are aware of the condition, and even fewer openly speak about it. With this tool, Reading Room, Netbiscuits and Prostate Action hope to raise awareness of the condition and enable men to easily track their health using their mobile phone.

With on-site support from Netbiscuits, the leading platform for the development and delivery of web apps across all mobile and connected devices, the Reading Room Mobile Hack will be a relay around the globe in true Olympian fashion. The starting bell for the 48-hour hackathon will ring at 9 a.m. in Reading Room's London office with the baton of design, coding, build and testing passing from London to Singapore, with the Australian team crossing the tape on 13 June 2012.

One of the key challenges faced in this digital age is the prolific number of devices available in the market. As an established Netbiscuits partner, Reading Room is able to deliver mobile websites across virtually every mobile platform and device including Apple iOS for iPhone & iPad, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone 6 & 7.

Reading Room is currently working on numerous mobile projects for its charity clients around the globe. Managing Director of Reading Room London, David Burgess says: “Charities are embracing new technology like never before and the prevalence of mobile in the third sector is growing fast. Sport Relief 2012 earned £7.9 million by text donations alone. Mobile should be at the forefront of charities’ marketing plans and Reading Room is excited to promote the marketing potential mobile can offer with its collaboration with Prostate Action and Netbiscuits.”

"We are proud to team up with Reading Room to add our special expertise to this innovative mHealth project," says Netbiscuits Managing Director Michael Neidhoefer. "Carrying and using a mobile device like a smartphone is now so commonplace throughout the day that convenient mobile tools like these can make a lasting contribution to the promotion of health issues."

Emma Malcolm, Chief Executive of Prostate Action, said: “Too many men suffer with BPH because they aren’t aware of its signs and symptoms, or are simply too embarrassed to talk about what they’re going through. We need to find a fresh approach to educating men about this disease, and that’s exactly what Reading Room is looking to do with its 48 hour mobile hack. If we’re going to get men to open up about BPH, we need to get creative – understanding the technology men carry with them every day, and using it to engage with them on an honest, open basis”.

Reading Room’s headquarters in Soho, London will be starting the challenge before teams in Australia and Singapore complete it.  Their London office will be open to interested parties keen to witness the buzz of developers and designers getting together to innovate with mobile technology. If you’re interested in attending the London-leg of the mobile hackathon, please email ricky.wallace@readingroom.com to let us know you’re coming.

You can also follow our story on Twitter @ReadingRoomUK using the hashtag #rrhack and follow events on blog.readingroom.com

Following the hackathon, Reading Room will be hosting a number of one hour workshops for people interested in doing mobile projects. More details available from ricky.wallace@readingroom.com