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Kent State Launches New iPhone Application

Posted Oct. 25, 2010

At the start of October, the leaves changed, the air got crisper and the forces of technology and academics joined at Kent State as it established its first iPhone application. This first phase of the project features Kent State news, events, university directory and map, as well as access to Kent State images and video.

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A closer look at the new app

Phase two, which is planned to hit the iPhone App Store by late November, will allow users to obtain library materials, sports scores and a list of courses.  Phase three, slated for an early 2011 launch, will include a virtual tour of the university as well as a bus schedule.

In July, the Division of Information Services and University Communications and Marketing partnered with Blackboard, a company that works to transform the educational experience, to develop the free iPhone app.

According to Vice President for Information Services Ed Mahon developing mobile applications for smart phones is a strategic initiative that extends Kent State's information services offerings to devices that are being adopted by students.  

"With the rapid growth of the mobile space, we are excited to be stepping into the mobile application-development front, to provide yet another dimension to the technology services we already engineer and support," Mahon says.

The Kent State app will also be available for Blackberry and Android as the university progresses in its technology efforts.

Team member Nick Gehring, coordinator of electronic communication and web content services, says the app, under the name KSUMobile is now available on iTunes and is a way for Kent State to adapt to the technological age.

"Mobile Internet is growing at a blazing rate," Gehring says. "Some reports have it taking over traditional PC-bound use in five years. In order to stay competitive and relevant, we had to develop a strong mobile website and phone applications."

Gehring also says smart phone applications help users obtain information faster by storing features data and images rather than loading information from the Web. 

"This is a project that will never be completed," Gehring says. "We will continue to add more features to our mobile presence and hopefully make them useful and relevant to our students, faculty, staff and alumni."

Those team members who made the iPhone app possible are Lin Danes, director of web services and interactive media, University Communications and Marketing; Nick Gehring, coordinator of electronic communication and web content services, University Communications and Marketing; Iris Harvey, vice president, University Relations; Gary Young, project manager, Information Services; Sameer Jaleel, manager, web presence, Information Services; Ed Mahon, vice president, Information Services, Tom Neumann, associate vice president, University Communications and Marketing; Coleen Santee, executive director, Information Services; Matt Suhay, associate applications developer, Information Services and Liz Wyglendowski, lead web presence analyst, Information Services.

By Erin Orsini