Cooldys is intended to be a social network for over 50s, where you can meet new people and organize activities or join those organized by other users of the app.
The application has 6 main features: Profiles, Activities, Messages, My Profile, Blog and Menu. The first 5 are located in a horizontal menu located at the bottom of the screen. The "Menu" feature is located at the top right of the screen in the form of three horizontal lines on top of each other.
- Profiles. This section will show some of the users who are registered in the app so that you can start a conversation if desired. It is also possible to set some filters (Age, Gender, Place of Residence) to search for the profile of the person you want to talk to.
- Activities. This section shows a list of all the activities that are active. As in the case of profiles, here you can also filter the activity search using the Date Range filters (A range of 3 months is assigned by default) and the province in which that activity is performed. This section also allows the user to create activities and provides a small video tutorial that shows how to do it.
- Messages. This section will display a list of conversations that are being held with the different users of the application, as if it were any instant messaging app.
- My Profile. In this section you can edit the profile that has been created to be able to register in the app, being able to modify the profile photo, add photos to a gallery and modify the personal data such as name, date of birth and place of residence. In addition, this section also offers the possibility to configure the notifications that the user wants to receive, both in the mail and in the notifications of the phone.
- Blog. This section provides a number of articles that may be of interest to users of the application, articles ranging from tips for the days of enforcement caused by the pandemic to interviews.
- Menu. This section is a drop-down menu at the top right of the screen. This menu has three sections:
- Main Menu. It contains the sections already mentioned.
- It contains information about the Cooldys team, standards of conduct, and contact with developers.
- It contains the conditions and privacy policies of the application.
In order to analyze and be able to carry out an evaluation of the application, a series of tests have been carried out to verify its operation. Testing was performed on a Samsung Galaxy J7 device (Android 9 Pie) with version 1.3.0 and an iPhone 6S (IOS 13.4.1) with version 1.3.0
To be able to use the application on both devices it has been necessary to install it through the respective application stores of each operating system.
Once the application is installed, at the time it is first started, it indicates that you need to register with an email in order to start using it or log in if you already have an account; you can use any email or sign in with a Facebook account.
After selecting the account to be used and accepting the Privacy Policies the app will ask for some personal data, such as first and last name, date of birth, gender, province of residence and a small description with a minimum of 25 characters (it is mandatory to fill in all the fields to be able to continue). Once you have finished entering all this data you can start using the application with all its features.
In this section we will measure the ease with which the user can use the application to achieve a specific goal, in this case is that an older person can meet people and make new friends.
The application is moderately easy to use, has a simple and friendly interface, consists of two menus, one at the bottom with five buttons very simple to recognize, either by its icon or its description, so the older people who want to use the application will have no difficulty understanding how the appworks. The other is located in the upper right, pressing it displays a list of buttons that do not have an icon, only description.
If the user is not used to using social networks, it may be difficult at first to understand as he is not familiar, however, it is very easy to learn how to use it so he will get used to its use quickly. This ease in learning usage also translates to the ease of remembering how it is used if you ever get to uninstall the application since the simplicity of the interface makes it very easy to remember what it does and offers each functionality.
As for its effectiveness, it must be said that the app is quite effective since, it manages to reach the desired goal as soon as you start the application since the activities that are active are shown in case you want to aim to attend one of them. Further, considering that, as mentioned above, it does not require a great effort to learn how to use it it can be said that the product has a high efficiency in terms of achieving socializing with more people..
With regard to portability, Cooldys works on any type of Smartphone, whether Android or iOS, plus it also works from its website.
Taking into account the analysis of each of the above criteria it can be said that the product has an extremely good usability in terms of achieving the objective taking into account the use that the elderly will give it.
In this section, different criteria have been applied to assess whether the application can be used regardless of the capabilities of the user.
Cognitive Accessibility – As for images and icons all of them have a description that facilitates their understanding, except for the drop-down menu on the top right and, in addition, they are reasonably sized so that they can be correctly identified. Note that the description is the same size as the button icon.
Accessibility for people with reduced vision – The app does not have a settings section where you can change the theme. The font size cannot be changed so depending on the screen dimensions of the device being used it is possible that the words may be difficult to read, although it is possible to increase the font size in the overall settings of the device, causing it to increase in the app in turn. To complete this accessibility section it has been decided to do some tests with the screen reader systems available from Android and IOS devices. These tests have focused on checking the correct labeling of cooldys icons and buttons. Buttons have been labeled well on all devices where the screen reader has been used, both with Android Talkback and IOS Voice Over.
Accessibility for people with hearing impairments – People with hearing impairments can use the app without any problem since, the app only provides a video, which is the tutorial to organize activities that is subtitled. Although they may have difficulty accessing all the content provided in the blog section, as there are some articles that are in the form of audio and their transcription is not available.
In this section we will study whether the application has a correct functioning and has no critical failures that harm the functions of the app.
In the days that the application has been tested has not presented any outstanding or critical malfunctions in its operation.
Privacy and security
Generally speaking, the application works correctly, no critical failure has been detected that has impaired its operation. As for the use that will be given going this app is that it contributes in a splendid way to mitigate the state of solitude that many older people suffer by providing them with the means to meet new people.
The main positive point of the application is the ease it provides to contact other people, with two simple clicks or taps you can start starting to start engaging a conversation with someone new. Another positive point is the ease of finding activities where you can meet with people who share hobbies or tastes, however, this point has been greatly affected negatively because of the effects of COVID-19 so it is possible that within a few months there are not many activities available to attend.
One of their points to improve is the slowness with which the app responds when you want to change sections, however, it is a problem that they are trying to optimize so in future updates the app could fix this problem.
Finally, it should be noted that to be able to use this application you need an internet connection, either via a Connection via WiFi or via mobile data.
- It helps excellently to mitigate the effect of loneliness among older people.
- It helps older people meet new people with their own tastes.
- It is a social network designed exclusively for people over 50 years old.
- It would be interesting to be able to change the contrast of the background from the application itself.
- It would be interesting if you could resize the letter from the settings section.
- You could study the possibility of safety by improving the performance of the app in terms of loading speed.