It was just a typical day in Mobile App Development class (yes, that’s a thing), spending an hour coming up with different app ideas for getting coffee without actually walking to a coffee shop.
Genius, I know.
Mobile app class is about working in teams of engineers (the computer science majors who do the actual app building) and designers (the journalism majors like me who come up with the concepts and designs for the app). We end up building an actual app, but right now we’re just getting started in Stage Zero: the ideation process. So we’ve been spending time doing brainstorming exercises while the engineers sit in a different room talking about building computers or breaking the Internet or something.
My group was assigned three concepts to combine into one app idea: Texting, note-taking, and the human need for coffee. Luckily these are things I happen to be an expert in.
So my group and I brainstormed the following list of brilliant/not so brilliant app ideas for the coffee need:
No one has interns that get coffee anymore, so this app resolves the question of who has to get the coffee. When a group wants coffee, they can mobile order using the app. Everyone puts their order down, and one person is randomly selected to be the one that goes to get the coffee. Everyone in my class thought this was hilarious. They also thought the name “Coffee Boy” was hilarious, for some reason.
Note taking app for baristas to make sure they get every word of Venti Iced Skinny Hazelnut Macchiato, Sugar-Free Syrup, Extra Shot, Light Ice, No Whip. Or Iced, Half Caff, Ristretto, Venti, 4-Pump, Sugar Free, Cinnamon, Dolce Soy Skinny Latte. Or Caramel Macchiato, Venti, Skim, Extra Shot, Extra-Hot, Extra-Whip, Sugar-Free. Very extra, if you ask me.
Order fulfillment app for small businesses (local coffee shops that aren’t Starbucks but might need to manage large orders). This was our boring practical idea that might actually work and we’ll never actually do.
Accuracy check for coffee shops to make sure orders are correct. Customers can text the shop to report if something happens with their order, and the shop can improve order fulfillment. Good for Starbucks locations where you order your latte with NO WHIP every time and they inevitably put whipped cream on it every time, and sometimes you feel bad asking them to take it off so you have to awkwardly scrape off a pile of whipped cream into a trash can in the corner.
Coffee delivery people on college campuses. A coffee street team comes running at you with your order as you walk out of class. Wish I’d thought of this years ago.
Bean There Done That
Text a coffee bean emoji for a delivery of grind-at-home coffee beans. Kind of like a rip-off of what Domino’s Pizza does, except for lazy coffee snobs.
How much caffeine have I had today? I don’t know. So I need this app. A caffeine intake tracker measures your current caffeine levels, tells you how much coffee you currently need, and suggest drinks based on your needs. You can indicate your mood and situation, and what time you’d like to be able to fall asleep.
Scheduling software that finds times/places for your contacts to meet for coffee. Works well for friend groups that have coordination issues and caffeine addictions, or boyfriends that also have coordination issues but are unsure whether they want to enter a Starbucks.
So what do you guys think? Are any of these million-dollar ideas? Would you use a mobile app that enables your caffeine consumption? Let me know and I’ll put in a good word with the engineers who are actually building the thing.