Technology was supposed to make it easier to keep track of your schedule, but somehow, things have gotten a little complicated. With so many different calendars and to-do lists to keep track of, how are you supposed to focus on what actually needs to get done? Enter: Hey! HeadsUp – an interactive service developed by Arjun Bhatnagar, a current Babson College freshman, and his brother Abhijay.
Arjun, CEO and developer of the app, explained that the idea sprouted out of his own frustrations with managing his everyday life. He knew there had to be a simpler way to keep track of daily tasks, meetings and appointments. Why couldn’t people remind other people? Why couldn’t they add things to their friends’, family members’ or coworkers’ calendars?
“The initial idea was we wanted an easy way to manage our schedules, and we found that Google calendar didn’t help us with day to day management,” explained Arjun. “We found that everything required us to input our task ourselves – and when something changed or had coordination involved with other people, it became so much more difficult.”
As Arjun pointed out, almost everything we do in our everyday lives, from texting and tweeting to talking on the phone, involves someone else. Hence, the core concept for the initial product was app to app communications. Along with his brother Abhijay, Arjun developed a platform that utilizes text messages, phone calls, emails and every other form of communication to simplify adding tasks and scheduling reminders onto other people’s calendars to simplify coordination. Abhijay, who attends Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, was in charge of the iOS and Android app. Eventually, Arjun’s Babson classmate Andrew Coca came on board to handle the finance and operations aspects.
What they built was a comprehensive schedule management solution, complete with host of helpful features. The app allowed users to find and connect with family, friends and groups for coordination, create reminders for themselves or others for a certain time, schedule reminders for the future, create private groups to manage reminders and requests, post group reminders or request favors in group feeds and claim reminders to help others. Push notifications and badges provided assurance that users were always up-to-date.
That version of Hey! Heads Up has been in the app store since the summer before last (while the founders were still in high school).
Now, the team is taking their initial concept much further. The first version of the app was centered around creating and managing tasks—but what about if you ignore it or you’re so busy you forget? The new platform will have an algorithm that can re-remind you when it’s appropriate. If someone in your circle tries to schedule something with you when you’re busy with something else, the app will notify them and suggest other times.
There are plenty of other possibilities for the platform, too. Planning a trip with friends and family? You can create groups within the app to coordinate travel. Organizing a big event? Use the app to send out reminders instead of having to contact every individual. Planning a group study or club meeting? Scheduling the session has never been so easy. You could even use it for medicine reminders, keeping track of coupons or staying on top of pick-up and drop-off times for the kids at school and daycare.
Arjun said a major goal for 2015, though, is to continue the traction he’s gained on customizing the solution for different businesses so they can streamline internal schedule coordination. Hey! Heads Up is already being tested out by a number of restaurants and hospitals, and because those organizations can hook into the platform’s API, the features of the product can be adjusted to meet the individual needs to each. Going into this year, Arjun hopes to work with businesses in a wide range of industries – and he’ll use the outcomes of those experiences to fine-tune the product for consumer use.
So when can we expect to take advantage of this schedule management tool? First, look out for a Kickstarter in the beginning of January. Arjun said the funds raised will go to eventually making the platform publicly available for free. In the meantime, the team is launching the first iteration of the app in private beta.
Photo of office table via Shutterstock.