Browsing articles in "Blog"

Mobicage launches a community version of Rogerthat supporting cities that want to be smarter

Jan 28, 2014   //   by Geert Audenaert   //   Blog, News  //  No Comments

The Rogerthat technology enables multiple organisations to build OneApp™ for their common audience. The big advantage of this approach is that the users get a very rich App on their phone which they can use to communicate with the individual organisations.

Applied to cities, this results in OneApp™ that

  • carries the name of the city
  • enables the city departments to build out mobile interactions with the citizens without having to cooperate
  • provides the ability to small companies in the city to own a personalised application in the city app to communicate with their customers
  • gives associations (scouting-, sports-, …) the ability to automate communication with their members

Being present in the city app eco-system comes with loads of advantages at a low cost.

Currently the community app eco-system is available in dutch targeted at Flanders (Belgium) and the Netherlands.

More information can be found on:
www.onzestadapp.be
www.onzestadapp.nl

If you would want a city app for your city in a non dutch region, contact us on info@mobicage.com

DJ-Matic adds 5000 apps to the Rogerthat platform to provide mobile services for its customers.

Oct 29, 2013   //   by Geert Audenaert   //   Blog, News, Testimonial  //  No Comments

DJ-Matic, the leading music infrastructure provider for the HORECA in Belgium and the Netherlands, joins forces with Rogerthat to provide personalized mobile services with the aim of raising the HORECA experience of its almost 5000 customers to a new dimension.

In DJ-Matic circles people are talking about a true HORECA (r)evolution. The goal is to make the visit to the HORECA customer of DJ-Matic more fun and interactive compared to todays HORECA experience. DJ-Matic wants to help its customers to remain successful and appeals on Rogerthat to provide each HORECA entrepeneur with a personalized App that will run in the Rogerthat Customer Service Platform.

At this time we cannot unveil to many details yet. You’ll have to wait until DJ-Matic launches the project at the HORECA Expo in Ghent from 17 / to 21 november 2013.

 

 

 

About DJ-Matic

djm Largest background music supplier in BeNeLux. Privately owned, independently run business. Operating from Ghent, Belgium since 2000. Dutch office in Deventer, The Netherlands. UK office in London. Spain office in Barcelona.
Full-service organisation:
  • In-house software development
  • Hardware assembly and repair
  • Multimedia content specialists
  • Dedicated sales team & dealer networks
  • Over 20 years combined market experience

About Rogerthat

Logo with slogan Rogerthat, the Mobile Customer Service Platform is the answer Mobicage offers to the growing demand for Apps for customer support. Instead of simply building Apps Mobicage applies Rogerthat to create an increased user experience to as well providers AND users of Customer Service, and refuses to provide solutions that are doomed to fail for its customers.

Launch of Rogerthat Resto

Aug 29, 2013   //   by Dennis Dinkelmeyer   //   Blog, News  //  No Comments

Rogerthat Resto – The Restaurant Customer Service Platform.

What is Rogerthat Resto?

Rogerthat Reso

It’s a mobile app – not just that but for a restaurants it’s a whole customer service platform

With heart and energy we have created a simple product that allows businesses to create their own
mobile app ‘in no time’. Unlike most alternatives it’s an affordable mobile solution that gives
restaurant management a new meaning.

What does the product do?

It binds customers and builds lasting relationships.

Rogerthat was built to help business deliver superior customer service via mobile phones.  We
believe smartphones are a powerful channel to interact with customers conveniently and effectively.
Customer service will bond your customers to your products and drive your business over the long
term. That’s our mission!

Why did we build Rogerthat Resto?

Rogerthat Resto is designed for the needs of restaurants.

In close collaboration with experienced professionals from the catering industry we have developed an extension to the Rogerthat platform that purely serves the wide needs of restaurant customer service.

Rogerthat Resto allows you to broadcast news & coupons, publish menus, communicate with customers and will boost your business with far-reaching recommendation features including Facebook, Mail and other contacts.

Support

The development of this product was supported by the European Commission, the Voka, Flanders’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry and UCL Advance under the Erasmus for Entrepreneurs Programme. We are grateful for the support we received and will continue work hard to ensure a sustainable impact of the project by expanding a franchise of the company in London, United Kingdom.

Visit www.rogerthat.net/resto for more inforamtion.

Kind regards,
Dennis Dinkelmeyer

 

Hyundai dealers excited about their new mobile communication channel via Rogerthat

Dec 12, 2012   //   by Geert Audenaert   //   Blog, News, Testimonial  //  No Comments

Yesterday Hyundai BeLux held a dealer meeting for 75 French speaking dealers in Belgium and Luxemburg. One of the topics at the dealer meeting was the introduction of the Rogerthat smartphone services Hyundai BeLux is providing for each of the Hyundai dealers in Belgium and Luxemburg.

Jan Van Haver, After Sales Manager at Hyundai BeLux, warned us that there might be some sceptic dealers that might not be overwhelmed with the introduction of yet another communication channel with customers, this time targeting the smartphones of customers via Rogerthat.
This warning turned out to be void, as the dealers were very enthusiastic about the steps Hyundai BeLux is taking regarding mobile automation via Rogerthat. Instead some of the dealers were already thinking along with their importer, seeing lots of opportunities to engage more with their customers.

To get started quickly Hyundai BeLux rolled out the Rogerthat services without integrating the software to internal systems, something they plan to do in a second phase. In the first phase, integration with the dealers happens via regular email. Dealers receive Rogerthat interactions via email, and can provide a response by just replying to those emails. Replies are delivered to the customer’s smartphone in relation to the interaction they started, making it a seamless experience for the customer.

One dealer remarked that customers will expect answers quickly via this mobile channel. Matthijs Keersmaeckers, Business Development Coordinator AS at Hyundai BeLux, answered that this is 21st century customer support. Customers expect answers to their questions quickly regardless of the medium through wich they are communicating.

Today the Belgian Dutch-speaking Hyundai dealers are being introduced to their Rogerthat service.

Presentation:
Hyundai dealer meeting presentation in French
Hyundai dealer meeting presentation in Dutch

Created, designed, deployed & published a mobile service in 3 hours.

Nov 27, 2012   //   by Geert Audenaert   //   Blog, News, Tech, Testimonial  //  No Comments

This article tells the story how I created a mobile application for an existing web API using the Rogerthat platform.

Intro

A while ago, Toon Vanagt -a former colleague- introduced me to his new startup data.be. His goal is to lower the barriers for businesses to access accurate data of other businesses. See http://data.be for more information on his product. Recently they also opened up their database via a REST api (http://api.data.be). I told Toon (Toon Vanagt, co-founder of data.be) that creating a service for Rogerthat that uses his API, would be very simple. The next day he sent me an API key for his cloud based service, so I could hack something together as soon as I had some time to spend. Last sunday evening at 8pm that time had come.

Ready, Set, Go: Service homescreen

November 25, 2012 8:00:05 pm
I started with having a look at the API documentation of data.be (https://api.data.be/) to examine what functionality the service should contain.
Their api currently offers three services: validate a VAT number, check the status of a company & get some basic information (name, foundationdate, address, status, …) about a company.
Okay this meant I had to create a homescreen with three icons.

I needed about 10 minutes to identify the functionality and to add matching homescreen icons as displayed in the screenshot on the left.

References:
How to create a homescreen

Look & feel: we need a screen branding

November 25, 2012 8:10:35 pm
To give the data.be service the same look & feel as the data.be website, I had to create a screen branding. A screen branding is a reusable definition for look and feel which you can create in HTML. The HTML together with the related css files and images can be uploaded as a zip into the Rogerthat service configuration panels.
To get started, I opened the data.be website in the chrome browser. Using inspect I removed some content in the data.be website so I could take a nice screenshot of 320 pixels wide containing logo and the background they use.

The width of the screenshot (320px) is important because lots of devices have a screen width of 320 pixels or a multiple of it (iPhone 640px).

To complete the screen branding, I created the HTML in which I configured how the screen branding should behave:

<html> 
<head>
 <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"/> 
 <meta property="rt:style:background-color" content="#285a7d"/>
 <meta property="rt:style:show-header" content="false"/>
 <meta property="rt:style:color-scheme" content="dark"/>
 <style type="text/css"> 
  body { padding: 0px; margin: 0px; background-color: #285a7d;}
  #background img { width: 100% }
  #background { width: 100%; text-align: center; margin-bottom: 5px; }
  #message { margin: 0.5em; }
  #message span { font-family: Arial; font-size: 1.2em; color: white; }
</style> 
</head> 
<body>
<div id="background"><img src="data.be.header.png" /></div>
<div id="message"><span><nuntiuz_message/></span></div>
</body> 
</html>

Notice the meta tags which define how Rogerthat displays the screen branding.
Creating the screenshots, writing the HTML and packaging them together into a zip took me another 20 minutes. Off course the fact that I had done this before, and that I had a couple of other screen brandings laying around was actually an advantage.

After uploading the screen branding, I configured the home screen to use it. You can see the result on the left.

References:
How to create a Rogerthat screen branding

Finally, it is coding time!

November 25, 2012 8:30:35 pm
All right, as a developer this is the part I like the most. Now I had to add code somewhere, so that the user gets some screens after he presses the icons in his homescreen. This can be done through integrating with our api. The last few years I started using Google App Engine to create online services. So I created the integration between the APIs of Rogerthat and data.be in a Google App Engine app using Python.
First created a request handler that handles callbacks originating from the Rogerthat cloud when the user uses the data.be service in his Rogerthat app.

# Service identifier key, blanked out with stars for the example because this is a secret
SIK = "******"
# Key of the branding, also blanked out
BRANDING = "******"

class DATADOTBEServiceHandler(webapp2.RequestHandler):

    def post(self):
        self.response.headers['Content-Type'] = 'application/json'

        # Check whether the request can be authenticated as coming from the Rogerthat cloud 
        # regarding activity of the data.be Rogerthat service
        sik = self.request.headers.get("X-Nuntiuz-Service-Key", None)
        if sik != SIK:
            logging.info("Denying request with SIK " + sik)
            self.response.set_status(401)
            return

        call_json = json.loads(self.request.body)
        method = call_json["method"].replace(".", "_")
        error = None
        result = None
        if hasattr(self, method):
            try:
                result = getattr(self, method)(call_json)
            except Exception, e:
                logging.exception("Error occured while processing request.")
                error = str(e)

        json.dump({'id': call_json['id'], 'result': result, 'error': error}, self.response.out)

    def test_test(self, call_json):
        # Is called by Rogerthat to test if the callback apis are reachable and function as expected. 
        # See http://www.rogerthat.net/developers/getting-started/#How_to_test_your_service
        return call_json["params"]["value"]

This is the basic setup I use in all my Rogerthat integration processes. It actually automates my integration with the Rogerthat callback apis so that I only need to focus on the implementing the methods that I need to implement for a specific service.
Creating an application on Google App Engine, adding this first request handler, deploying it to Google, and validating the setup from the Rogerthat service panels took me another 20 minutes.

November 25, 2012 8:51:15 pm
When the user presses the icons in the service home screen, I get a poke callback (see poke api callback documentation), so in order to react on this with a form in which the user can enter a VAT number, I need to implement this method:

class DATADOTBEServiceHandler(webapp2.RequestHandler):

...

    def messaging_poke(self, call_json):
        tag = call_json["params"]["tag"]
        email = call_json["params"]["email"]
        logging.info("Received poke from %s with tag %s" % (email, tag))
        if tag in ("is_vat_valid", "company_status", "company_info"):
            return get_vat(tag)


def get_vat(tag):
    return dict(type='form',
                value=dict(message="Voer het BTW nummer in dat u wil controleren:",
                           form=dict(type="text_line", positive_button="Valideer", 
                                     positive_button_ui_flags=1, negative_button="Annuleren", 
                                     widget=dict(max_chars=15, 
                                                 place_holder="BTW nummer",
                                                 value=None)), 
                           flags=64, alert_flags=1, branding=BRANDING, tag=tag))

The result of this method looks like this:
This took me 30 minutes to get right.

Note: this example shows API usage which is at the time of writing not yet documented in our reference documentation but will be very soon.

 

November 25, 2012 9:21:05 pm
At this time the functionality to validate a Belgian VAT number was 50% finished. When the user presses the icon in the menu, the callback handling this request results in a screen asking the user to the enter the VAT number. The next step is to accept the input of the user, validate the VAT number and send back a screen with the results of the validation. To implement this, I added the next piece of code:

class DATADOTBEServiceHandler(webapp2.RequestHandler):

...

    def messaging_form_update(self, call_json):
        logging.info(json.dumps(call_json, indent=4).encode('utf8'))
        answerid = call_json["params"]["answer_id"]
        tag = call_json["params"]["tag"]
        if not answerid == "positive":
            # The user pressed the cancel button
            return
        if tag == "is_vat_valid":
            # The user entered the VAT number after pressing the icon to validate a VAT number
            return validate_vat(call_json)

def validate_vat(call_json):
    vat_orig = call_json["params"]["form_result"]["result"]["value"]
    if not vat_orig:
        # nothing was entered, send screen to enter VAT again
        return get_vat(call_json["params"]["tag"])
    # sanitize input
    vat = "".join((c for c in vat_orig if c in "0123456789"))
    # callout to the data.be API to validate the VAT number
    result = urlfetch.fetch("https://api.data.be/1.0/vat/%s/validity?api_id=***&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;api_key=****" % vat)
    # validate result of the API call
    if result.status_code != 200:
        logging.error("Failed to validate vat:\nstatus=%s\nerror=%s" % (result.status_code, result.content))
        return dict(type='message',
                value=dict(message="%s is GEEN geldig BTW nummer." % vat_orig,
                           answers=[], flags=1, alert_flags=1, branding=BRANDING, tag=None))
    logging.info(result.content)
    # parse result of API call
    result = json.loads(result.content)
    if not result["success"]:
        return dict(type='message',
                value=dict(message="%s is GEEN geldig BTW nummer." % vat_orig,
                           answers=[], flags=1, alert_flags=1, branding=BRANDING, tag=None))
    # prepare result screen
    if result["data"]["valid"]:
        message = "%s is een GELDIG BTW nummer." % result["data"]["vat-formatted"]
    else:
        message = "%s is GEEN geldig BTW nummer." % result["data"]["input"]
    # return result screen
    return dict(type='message',
                value=dict(message=message, answers=[], flags=1, alert_flags=1, 
                           branding=BRANDING, tag=None))

Adding this piece of code took me another 25 minutes.

November 25, 2012 9:45:15 pm
After 1 hour and 45 minutes I was ready with the first functionality. Luckily the two remaining features were very similar, so I could reuse quite some code to implement them as well.
The 1 hour and 15 minutes remaining, I used to add those 2 remaining features as well as adding a nice description for the data.be Rogerthat® service, and do some testing, before declaring it ready.

At the end I was really proud of my accomplishment, creating a mobile application on Sunday eve, which was functional, looked nice and works very good.

November 25, 2012 11:05:08 pm
Done.

To try data.be Rogerthat service I made, just search for data.be in the services tab of the Rogerthat app on your iPhone or Android app or via the Rogerthat web version accessible at https://rogerth.at

Hyundai rolls out over 100 Rogerthat mobile services for its dealer network in Belgium and Luxemburg.

Oct 8, 2012   //   by Carl D'Halluin   //   Blog, Testimonial  //  No Comments

Over one hundred professional car dealers are part of the official Hyundai network in Belgium and Luxembourg. They are trained by Hyundai and well-equipped to provide the best service. The dealer network is well-known for its excellent customer care and outstanding technical skills.

Hyundai is planning to extend its customer service to the smartphone. Customers will be able to schedule appointments, get emergency help, plan service interactions, get in touch with salespeople, schedule a test drive, get reminders for planned interactions and get invitations for Hyundai events, deals or discounts.

All members of the Hyundai network use software for planning customer interactions, scheduling appointments, ordering parts, etc. Bringing this functionality to the smartphone requires a user experience tailored to the smartphone, and not just a downsized web site. Apps were invented for this very purpose.

However, creating a smartphone app for every individual member of the Hyundai network would be prohibitive from a cost point of view, and result in an inflexible and hard-to-manage set of over 100 apps for iPhone, 100 apps for Android, … Yet the individual car dealers want to maintain their individuality, and be free in how they communicate with their customers, which services they want to bring to the smartphone, and which sales and marketing actions they plan.

Using the Rogerthat platform, the individual members of the Hyundai network each have their own service inside one single Rogerthat smartphone app. Hyundai customers interact with their dealer through the Rogerthat platform. This brings tremendous benefits:

  • Every Hyundai car dealer has its own individual smartphone offering.
  • Through the Rogerthat self-service panels, each member of the Hyundai network can select which services they offer on the smartphone, how they communicate with their customers. This is a very flexible system helping them to differentiate themselves from each other.
  • When Hyundai Belux does a software update, the Rogerthat services of every car dealer are updated automatically.
  • No need to build and maintain one app per car dealer, resulting in significant cost savings.

The Hyundai car dealer services will become available in the Rogerthat platform at the end of 2012.

Belgian political party CD&V selects Rogerthat mobile application platform to interact with voters

Aug 28, 2012   //   by Carl D'Halluin   //   Blog, News, Testimonial  //  No Comments

  • English
  • Nederlands (Dutch)

Lochristi, 28 augustus.

In de aanloop naar de gemeenteraadsverkiezingen van oktober zal de CD&V zijn mobiele campagne voeren via het Rogerthat communicatieplatform. Deze smartphone technologie werd integraal in Vlaanderen ontwikkeld en is aan zijn opmars bezig binnen Europa en in de Verenigde Staten.

Een snel groeiend deel van de bevolking is permanent bereikbaar op een smartphone of tablet en gebruikt die veel vaker dan een gewone PC. CD&V was al een eind op zoek naar een manier om deze smartphone gebruikers te betrekken binnen het CD&V project.

Kris Peeters, Minister-President van Vlaanderen, getuigt:

“ CD&V werkt voor hun mobiele campagne samen met het innovatieve Rogerthat uit Lochristi. Via de mobiele weg krijgen onze kiezers zo ook de kans om onze lijsten, programma’s en verschillende tools per gemeente te raadplegen.CD&V activeert de kiezer door niet alleen het beleid van CD&V uit te leggen, maar ook door de burger inspraak te geven en zijn mening te vragen over verschillende standpunten.

Aan de hand van interactieve quizzes en enquêtes laat CD&V de burger mee het beleid sturen. Deze smartphone toepassing laat de kiezers zelf politicus-voor-een-dag spelen.

Het Rogerthat platform is een ontwikkeling van Mobicage, een Vlaamse IT startup uit Lochristi bij Gent.

Deze samenwerking bewijst dat CD&V veel belang hecht aan hoogtechnologische innovatie in Vlaanderen. ”

Het Rogerthat smartphone platform laat organizaties en bedrijven toe om heel eenvoudig diensten aan te bieden aan mobiele gebruikers. In de Rogerthat smartphone app kunnen verschillende organisaties met gebruikers communiceren en informatie aanbieden.

CD&V ontwikkelde zijn smartphone dienst bovenop het Rogerthat smartphone platform om een aantal redenen:

  • CD&V kan heel eenvoudig en heel snel zelf mobiele functionaliteit aanmaken en wijzigen, zonder dat hiervoor software ontwikkeling nodig is
  • Interacties kunnen gestart worden door de gebruiker of door de CD&V
  • Out-of-the-box integratie met QR codes voor het verkiezingsdrukwerk
  • Gestructureerde communicatie zorgt voor een veel efficiëntere manier van dataverwerking
  • In 1 keer beschikbaar op verschillende smartphone types
  • Veel lagere ontwikkelingskost

Het Rogerthat platform biedt veel andere mogelijkheden voor de organisaties en overheden zoals het automatiseren en gebruiksvriendelijker maken van klantendiensten, het plannen van afspraken, het vereenvoudigen van communicatie met klanten en medewerkers, het uitvoeren van real-time enquêtes, het opvolgen van patienten, het uitzenden van herinneringen, enz…

Lochristi (Belgium), August 28, 2012.

The Belgian provincial and municipal elections of 2012 will take place on October 14. Christian-democratic party CD&V will run its mobile campaign using the Rogerthat mobile communication platform. This smartphone technology was developed in Belgium and is rapidly expanding throughout Europe and the Americas

A fast growing part of the population is always connected using their smartphone or tablet. They use these devices much more often than a regular PC. For quite some time, CD&V was looking for a way to reach out to these smartphone users.

Kris Peeters, Minister-President of Flanders, testifies:

“ For our mobile campaign, CD&V cooperates with the innovative startup company Rogerthat. They are based in Lochristi, close to Ghent. Through this mobile channel our voters can consult the municipal and provincial lists, the local track record and agenda, and the party ideology. CD&V activates the voters by not only explaining our party line, but also by asking the opinion of the voter on important topics.

Through a number of interactive quizzes and questionnaires, the CD&V allows the citizen to impact the policy. The Rogerthat CD&V application lets the voter play politician-for-one-day.

The Rogerthat platform was developed by Mobicage, a Flemish IT startup company based in Lochristi near Ghent.

This cooperation proves that CD&V values hi tech innovation in Flanders”

The Rogerthat mobile application platform allows companies and organizations to offer its services to mobile users. The Rogerthat platform makes it very easy to build a smartphone frontend.

CD&V chose to develop its mobile offering on top of the Rogerthat platform for a variety of reasons:

  • Through the Rogerthat drag&drop self-service panels, CD&V can very easily develop or modify mobile functionality, without the need for software programming.
  • CD&V can initiate an interaction with a user
  • Out-of-the-box integration with QR codes, which can be directly used in printed posters or flyers
  • Structured communication and user responses allows for very efficient data processing
  • Immediately available on multiple smartphone types
  • Much better TCO than building a custom smartphone app

The Rogerthat platform offers many more possibilities for organizations or governments such as automating customer service, appointment scheduling, simplification of communication with customers and employees, running real-time questionnaires and polls, follow-up of patientes, sending reminders, etc…

World’s first "multiple choice messaging" platform launched

May 10, 2012   //   by Carl D'Halluin   //   Blog, News  //  No Comments

Rogerthat platform enables business process automation through rich mobile interactions

Press release:  English (PDF)  –  Deutsch (PDF)  –  Français (PDF)  –  Nederlands (PDF)

Ghent, Belgium – May 10, 2012 – Mobicage NV, a mobile communications start-up, has released Rogerthat, an innovative platform aimed at revolutionising communication and process automation via smartphones and tablets.

The app and cloud based service use a unique and patent pending “multiple choice messaging” approach to enable real-time and interactive communication. With Rogerthat, organisations can automate communication between IT systems and their employees, customers and subscribers to improve the customer service experience and drive down costs.

Unlike email or SMS, a Rogerthat message contains interactive elements such as buttons, sliders, text input fields, or barcode scans. Responding to a message is simple and intuitive, often requiring no more than a single click. This questionnaire-like approach generates a dramatic increase in user responsiveness. Moreover, the structured responses can easily be interpreted by server software to automate tasks or facilitate backend processes.

“SMS text messages, email and the social media are great for simply delivering information from a source to a wider community, but those technologies were never designed to be truly interactive or able to process decisions,” explains Carl D’Halluin, CEO for Mobicage, “Rogerthat is unique because it is designed from the ground up to allow organisations to quickly develop, deploy and benefit from structured two way communication.”

“This distinction between a passive message and an active Rogerthat communication stream is a truly innovative element within our technology, and the results can be seen at some of the beta customers we have worked with during the development phase,” D’Halluin adds.

The Rogerthat platform enables tremendous simplifications and cost savings in daily business operations. For example, customer service can quickly automate processes like managing delivery times or the RTM of products. Organisations with field service staff can use the technology for alerting, appointment management and scheduling. Within logistics, track and trace applications can benefit from the toolset as do marketing activities like customer feedback and surveys.

The simplicity and the structured interactive approach make Rogerthat an accessible communication medium for deaf or technologically unsophisticated people, for example in case of an emergency or in m-Health or m-Care scenarios.

The platform also supports QR and barcodes to allow users to scan codes via mobile phone cameras for processes such as warranty certificates, mail-in rebates, or product identification. The platform can also use the built in features of mobile devices such as cameras, GPS, motion detectors and other elements to deliver new forms of interactive communications.

Behind the scenes, Mobicage provides a complete set of tools including a Message Flow Designer offering a drag and drop method of turning business content into a flow of communication. For the more technical, a full programming API is available to provide deeper integration between Rogerthat and CRM, ERP and bespoke applications.

“We are now reaching the point where smartphones are the most prevalent form of communication and Rogerthat is the first service platform to allow organisations to quickly automate true decision making two way communications without having to invest in expensive technology or dedicated programming expertise.”

To help potential customers and system integration partners understand the power of Rogerthat, Mobicage is offering free Rogerthat trial kits for a limited period. Organisations that have trialled the technology during the closed beta like Audi car dealer Ghent NAM Zuid and IT monitoring specialist Hestia are now using Rogerthat in production environments.

“We are convinced that the Rogerthat platform will trigger the next wave of process automation which was simply not possible before the widespread adoption of the smartphone,” explains Geert Audenaert, CTO for Mobicage, “Today’s connected generation creates a plethora of opportunities for communication-based automation.”

Rogerthat is currently available for iPhone and Android phone. For more information please visit: http://www.rogerthat.net.

Customer use case – Hestia Managed Services

A beta customer that Mobicage worked with in the development of Rogerthat is Hestia Managed Services, a market leader for ICT infrastructure maintenance and hosting services in Belgium. Hestia has a large on-call workforce which is responsible for monitoring and managing its customers ICT infrastructure. It uses an automated system to alert on-call personnel when an anomaly has been detected. However, traditional e-mail or text (SMS) based alerting has a number of shortcomings such as unreliability, lack of interactivity, and lack of control by the sender.

Instead, Hestia replaced its traditional alerting system with the Rogerthat Platform. This allowed Hestia to improve their operational excellence, respond better to alerts and resolve issues faster. “Rogerthat allows us to dramatically improve how we communicate with our field staff and reduce the administrative hurdles we used to face with emails and SMS technology,” explains Wim Kelchtermans, head of the Hestia Shared Service Centre.

In addition, it was difficult to confirm that that SMS text message or email actually made it to the smartphone of the recipient and had been read and understood. Instead, Rogerthat offers embedding interactive buttons in the alert messages, which can control workflows and scheduling at Hestia in a secure way.

About Mobicage NV:

Mobicage NV is a Belgian software start-up founded in 2011 by cloud industry veterans Carl D’Halluin and Geert Audenaert. The Rogerthat Platform is a multiple-choice messaging platform for 2-way structured communication between organizations and persons.

Example – automating your customer support using Rogerthat

The following screencast shows a user who has installed the Rogerthat app on his iPhone. She is connected to 4 Rogerthat services. She gets customer support from a digital TV service provider, without suffering through slow voice menus and annoying waiting music only to get an uninformed helpdesk operator. Instead, she identifies her problem in few straightforward steps, and will be called back at the time of her choice.

Click here for full-screen video

Car Dealer Audi NAM Zuid Gent selects Rogerthat platform for improved customer service

Apr 20, 2012   //   by Carl D'Halluin   //   Blog, News, Testimonial  //  No Comments

Car dealer Audi NAM Zuid selects the Rogerthat platform to improve its customer service through smartphone-based appointment scheduling, service planning and sales interaction.

For some time Audi NAM Zuid was thinking about using the smartphone for extending its customer service and after-sales offering. However, building a dedicated smartphone app seemed complicated and expensive, since it requires a large upfront investment of time and money, without being certain how the mobile offering will be used.

Johan De Vos, After Sales Manager at Audi NAM Zuid, testifies:

“When we learnt about the Rogerthat platform for flexible smartphone communication with zero setup effort, we were interested immediately. It became obvious that having our own smartphone app is completely unnecessary, is inflexible and would carry a high maintenance cost. Using the Rogerthat platform, we can offer smartphone-based customer service in a very simple and flexible way. Customers can make appointments, get in touch with our sales reps, get information or report problems.

The perfect flexibility in creating and modifying the communication flows, without having to create and distribute a new version of the smartphone app, allows us to iterate over the communication process, and finetune it continuously. We can learn from our customers what works and what doesn’t. Using the Message Flow Designer, we can do this by ourselves, without the need for software programming or IT integration.”

Audi adds and finetunes one customer interaction at a time. They started with appointment scheduling, then added offering mobility solutions such as a replacement car, and customer satisfaction surveys. Rogerthat gives them an interactive channel to provide news, send promotions and invite customers to events.

Google App Engine push task queues & the development environment

Mar 27, 2012   //   by Geert Audenaert   //   Blog, Tech  //  No Comments

Today Bart and I spent 2 hours debugging in the python Google App Engine, trying to figure out why all our scheduled tasks start to fail in the development server.

It is no secret that the public Rogerthat cloud is running on Google’s App Engine infrastructure.

To make our messaging service reliable, we make a lot of use of the deferred library which relies on the push task queue mechanism. So we kick off quite a large number of tasks.

At some point during testing on the development server, all tasks executions start to fail, flooding the logs as follows:

WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,447 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task4 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.016 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,455 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task3 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.032 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,468 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task4 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.032 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,491 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task3 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.064 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,502 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task4 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.064 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,558 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task3 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.128 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,570 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task4 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.128 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,688 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task3 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.256 seconds
WARNING  2012-03-27 12:40:36,701 taskqueue_stub.py:1936] Task task4 failed to execute. This task will retry in 0.256 seconds

As you can see, no stack traces.

First we tried searching the internet for a solution, but apart from many others looking for help, we did not find the fix we needed. So there was no other option, as to debug the Google App Engine dev_server stack ourselves.

After a while we found that for some reason the development server stopped launching the task urls on the correct location. For some reason it resolved its own hostname and tried to access the RequestHandler with the hostname instead of on the ip address it is serving our app. Which did not work because the hostname resolves locally to 127.0.0.1 instead of on the ip address on wich we have the development serving. On top of that it totally lost the configured port as well on which we configured the dev server.

We fixed it by adding an extra line at the following location:

root@dev:/root/testing# git diff /root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub_original.py /root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub.py
diff --git a/root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub_original.py b/root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub.py
index df3b6a7..305167a 100644
--- a/root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub_original.py
+++ b/root/testing/google_appengine/google/appengine/api/taskqueue/taskqueue_stub.py
@@ -1826,6 +1826,7 @@ class _TaskExecutor(object):
 
 
       connection_host, = header_dict.get('host', [self._default_host])
+      connection_host = self._default_host
       if connection_host is None:
         logging.error('Could not determine where to send the task "%s" '
                       '(Url: "%s") in queue "%s". Treating as an error.',
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