Emergency Contact List (ECL) Update


Over a year ago we introduced you to what has become the most popular sample app in our catalogue. The Emergency Contact List application.

At its core, ECL is an app that receives a Push payload, chock-full of organizational data. Simple and yet so much more than that. The organization data the app receives is saved locally and is available to the user at any time, even while offline. When the organizations data changes, a simple Push from the BES admin will update all deployed ECLs.

This type of redundancy is necessary for businesses of all sizes. When the network is down, or there is an emergency (I can hear my network admin friends shouting that an outage is an emergency, just pretend for this post that it isn’t), users need a reliable way to look up and get in touch with co-workers and colleagues. This is what made the ECL app so popular.

The original ECL app has served its purpose well, but it was built with an older framework and lacked some functionality that our customers have been asking for.

Enter the two new and improved ECL apps.

I created two brand new apps from the ground up using the Ionic Framework. One exclusively for BlackBerry 10, which uses Push payloads to populate the organization data and another version, which polls a server for updated data and is cross-platform (BlackBerry10, Android and iOS).

Here’s a quick list of features and updates

  • Two versions
    • Push (BlackBerry 10 only)
    • Polling (BlackBerry 10, Android, iOS)
  • Completely rewritten using Ionic Framework
  • Backwards compatible with v1 JSON schema
  • New design and user interface
  • Ability to Email/SMS multiple contacts
  • More and more…

The changes are far too great to list all of them. The biggest take-away from a development perspective is that both apps are fully backwards compatible JSON data used for V1.

As usual, the project is hosted on our GitHub Repository. Check them out, and let me know what you think. Sound off here in the comments or on Twitter.

Chad Tetreault

About Chad Tetreault

A developer at heart, I’ve been coding in some shape or form since the age of 13. Nowadays I focus on building awesome cross-platform (Android, iOS, BlackBerry) mobile web applications powered by Cordova, JavaScript, and AngularJS.