Our project stemmed from our frustration dealing with too many cards, specifically gift cards and Prepaid VISA Cards, in our wallets. Americans spent more than $37 billion on prepaid debit cards in 2010 and billions in gift cards each year. The Android app we created incorporates Venmo payments to allow consumers to combine, access and use funds stored on gift cards as well as on Prepaid VISA Cards in one place. Another problem we sought to address was the fact that as much as 7% of all git cards go unredeemed. For example, if you’re a vegetarian and someone gives you a gift card to a steakhouse, you might find it difficult to use. Mismatches such as these and many more like them have created an accrual of unredeemed gift card spending in our economy. Our project also aims to resolve this inefficiency by creating a forum in which individuals may exchange unwanted gift cards for ones they actually desire.
What it does
- merging VISA card accounts/amounts into Venmo for the convenience of centralizing the money from various cards
- hold prepaid debit card info
- keep track of each card
- send it to Venmo account
- inventory of gift cards
- keep a list of arrays with the card balance and codes
- have a “total” box to show the total amount
- keep track of remaining balance when it is spent
- swapping gift cards
- community exchange with people with cards that you want/need to swap
- swap card number and security code
How I built it
We prioritized the different functionalities and then systematically broke large problems into shorter ones. For example, our first priority was to be able to combine prepaid cards and send to venmo account since it was easier to implement than the giftcard swap system . We used many object oriented principles to implement all parts of the software.
Challenges I ran into
We had too many features we wanted to implement and too little time. For example, we wanted to implement a security system to prevent fraud but realized that it was less important for now since we are merely trying to build a prototype to showcase the overall idea.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We are proud of the fact that we were able to program an Android application concurrently with learning Android itself (since none of the team members had substantial experience.)
What I learned
On the practical side, we learned Android App Development and learned the nuances of Github. However, we also learned something greater; we learned how to work together in a team environment on a large scale project in a short time. We learned how to budget time and set priorities in order to accomplish what is truly important.
What's next for AcuCard
In our next steps, we hope to find a way to bypass the 3% processing fee in Venmo money transfer, include more companies under gift cards, make purchases and transactions through barcode generation, improve the community for exchange of gift cards, and prevent fraud through transaction holds.