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This app is a Life Saver!

August 19, 2013 14:47 IST

This app is a Life Saver!

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Life Saver -- that's the name of the app -- is a bit of an ugly duckling, that later became a swan, says Raghu Mohan.

Ever so often, the universe has a very uncanny way of telling you that your judgement is wrong. This was an app that I had decided not to write about when I first got it. The app looked like something out of Android 2.1 and was essentially a list of people who were either looking for or willing to donate blood.

Doing a user review of this app would mean to point out many things that are wrong with this app.

But I won't do that, as over the past week or so, this app has proved me wrong. Life Saver, (that's the name of the app) is a bit of an ugly duckling, that later became a swan. Why do I say so?

Read on...


Photographs: Sahil Salvi

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This app is a Life Saver!

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What is it about?

It is essentially a list of people who're looking for blood donation and people who're looking to donate blood. Users can register themselves on the app as a volunteer or as a healthcare institution.

Post this, you can post on the app saying that you're of a certain blood group and you're available to donate blood on a given address. On the list itself, you can tap on a contact, which you can call, SMS or block (for spam).

The effectiveness of this concept isn't apparent on the first go round, but when you get push notification after push notification about people looking to donate or needing blood, you begin to realise that there's something more to this.

The app is in a closed beta right now, so when the first wave of notifications hit, I thought it was a first day thing. But since then, I've had at least 10 notifications form the app every day, of which at least a few are near me.


Photographs: Sahil Salvi

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This app is a Life Saver!

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Brilliant concept on a not so brilliant app

I still stand by the fact that the app isn't the best in the world.

In fact, while trying to notify that you're willing to donate blood, the app crashes on an Android 4.3 device. The tabbed layout on the app is so 2009, some of which don't even work. You can let some of these flaws go as Life Saver is still a private beta, but even if it were to iron out all of its function flaws, it would still pale in comparison to other apps in the category from a usability stand point.

But if you're looking to donate blood, or find someone of a certain blood group, I am yet to see a more effective smartphone solution. It is brilliant. All it takes is for you to enter your blood details and a phone number.

The only thing missing on the current version of the app is location-based sorting, which would make it more relevant for someone looking for a blood donation.

I really hope that Life Saver irons out its flaws, and I compliment the idea behind the app. Watch out for updates on Life Saver.


Photographs: Punit Paranjpe/Reuters

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