Synovia Solutions is collaborating with Butler University’s Andre B. Lacy School of Business’ students, who will help Synovia chart the future of its app, Here Comes the Bus.
Students from the business school are conducting product and customer research aimed at providing multiple options for how Synovia could expand the features and profitability of the app. Launched in 2015, the free app has grown from a handful of school district customers to hundreds of schools nationwide and more than a million users, according to Synovia.
“This project marks an important milestone for Synovia as we move beyond our initial development and deployment phase to creating a more dynamic mobile application that can provide more value to parents, students, and educators,” said Jon King, CEO of Synovia Solutions. “We’re enthusiastic to see how these Butler students can infuse their fresh ideas, digital fluency, and Butler education to bear in helping us design the next iteration of Here Comes the Bus.”
Five Butler University students will spend several months conducting interviews with current Here Comes the Bus users and will identify the macro trends impacting the wider mobile app industry. Their goal is to provide a series of recommendations that Synovia can integrate into its technology roadmap.
“We’re excited and appreciative to work with Synovia on this opportunity,” said Daniel McQuiston, associate professor of marketing at Butler University, who teaches the students who will work on the project. “As senior marketing majors in their capstone class, they will hone their marketing and business education from classes and internships in a real-life consulting situation. It really helps them understand how a company can use marketing tools to create a competitive advantage.”
Here Comes the Bus serves school districts across the U.S., including Charlotte-Mecklenburg (N.C.) Schools, Indianapolis Public Schools, Prince William County (Md.) Public Schools, and San Antonio (Texas) Independent School District.
The app has a 4.6-star rating on the Apple app store with more than 39,000 reviews, according to Synovia. It captured an IHS Markit Innovation Award at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show.
Meanwhile, the fleet tracking solutions provider will also launch Here Comes the Bus Lite, a version of the app that is designed to serve smaller school districts, Bryan Mitchell, a spokesman for Synovia Solutions, told SBF in January. The app will be made more affordable without the additional cost of routing software, he added.
More information on Synovia’s GPS-powered fleet tracking solutions can be found on the company’s Facebook and LinkedIn pages.