An app supporting functioning of autistic children

  • Signes de sens
  • NGO (Software accessibility innovations)
  • France
  • May 2021 - ongoing

Customer Benefits

For our client:

  • Refreshing old and adding new layouts to increase the application attractiveness;
  • Integrating several existing applications in one system created in Flutter – the latest technology supported by Google, indicating a strong technological development;
  •  All software managed in one place, in the cloud;
  •  Help from highly skilled developers;
  •  Expertise in agile methodologies;
  •  Increasing trust in the product in the Signes de sens team.

 

Benefits for end customers:

  • Chances for children to learn from Ben le Koala by mimicking his gestures;
  • Possibility for parents to follow and share the child’s progress;
  • Tips for parents on how to improve learning;
  • Multiplatform, easily scalable and maintainable mobile application built using modern technologies: flutter, firebase;

Project Background

Since 2003, Signes de sens has been making learning, information and culture accessible to people with sensory, cognitive, mental and psychological disabilities. They provide concrete solutions to the problems encountered by the most vulnerable people, and thus improve the experience of all, in a logic of universal design.

They had already released a few Android and iOS applications with their character – Ben the Koala (Ben le Koala), but the rollout process didn’t go smoothly, the application is no longer following Play Store policies, and it became difficult to maintain and update with new features, which is a pity because it has gained a following since its release.

We proposed a refreshed single code base application written from scratch using Flutter – a novel cross platform technology. Stepwise will also prepare a seamless CI/CD pipelines to make future releases and product support hassle free. Flutter gives many possibilities for future expansions to other platforms – e.g. the web.

Main Challenge

Stepwise has prepared a work plan to improve the operation of the existing application. Our client wanted to improve the quality of the code, change the design and improve the management of the entire system.

We wanted to ensure that the application provides the possibility to play a variety of Ben le Koala videos, and to allow parents to follow their children’s progress and become better teachers, with additional tips being provided for every acquired skill. Also, to enable product development and in-app purchases of physical products in the future.

Our Approach & Final Outcome

As existing applications are hard to maintain when built using native technologies, our client wanted a complete overhaul of the application interface, so we finally decided to start from scratch. An obvious choice for us at Stepwise was to use Flutter, with which we have a lot of experience and strongly believe in the product.

We are able to use a single codebase for multiple platforms, which makes production and maintenance a lot easier. With the help of CI/CD pipelines, we will ensure that App Store/Play Store releases will be a seamless experience for our client.

By starting from the ground up, we are able to choose the best architectural solutions and use up to date tools to make sure that app performs well, scales easily, and is responsive, engaging and accessible. We are using Scrum methodology to ensure that the final product will meet Signes de sens’ expectations.


The project is still evolving. Cooperation between Stepwise and Signes de sens is ongoing. We are successively implementing all the assumptions of the project. The application we are working on, in the future, may be helpful not just for parents, but also in the wider education and health care industry.

A high code quality, the best design practices and the brilliant idea of our clients, will have a real impact on the lives and development of many children. We are proud of it.

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