ABOUT THE PROJECT
PPG Finder is a navigation app, available for Android and iOS devices, designed specifically for paramotor, and ultralight pilots willing to get “regular” dashboard information for their flights (showing map, altitude, speed, compass, riding time and traveled distance), PLUS the ability to check, in real time, where other pilots” are around them. The “live” view shows friends around on the map, highlighting their altitude, speed, and distance from you. Also, the app records your flights in the cloud, meaning you will access them, even on different devices.
Being a paramotor pilot myself, I have always looked for ways to decrease flying risks, but also enjoying my experiences while flying with friends. As pilots, we like to use apps to help us to track our flight data (while flying or after). While there are several apps focusing on helping pilots with dashboards and maps, none of them was designed to help people flying in groups. Also, the large majority (if not all) of them are clearly “designed” by developers:
Create a complete, yet simple, app that provides “real time” information about pilots flying around, respecting the features from other apps, already used by the pilots.
ABOUT THE DESIGN PROCESS
I had several constraints while designing PPG Finder, including the fact I am not a professional developer, neither I knew how to code with the selected SDK. You can learn more about the development process here. The entire process could be resumed as a fully Lean UX cycle: idea, development, test, and so on.
Before starting I interviewed several pilots (in fact they “crowdfunded” the development) about what they needed. Also, during the beta phase and since the launch, I kept the interviews, reason why the interface changed a lot from the original idea to the first version, or the final UI.
PPG Finder is already used by more than one hundred pilots (still growing) across the world. The app is available in 3 different languages and expanded from a “real time” dashboard about flights to a full flight management system, including route planning. It has a modern design, being a user-oriented solution.