Imagine you're one of the nearly 1.12 hundred million adults in the United States without a smartphone. Not everyone has a smartphone in their hand and the ability to answer any possible question in their back pocket. That's what makes Textor so important.
We're giving a huge and commonly unrepresented group of people the resources that can unlock so many doors and create immense change. Think of all the activity websites like Bing, Twitter, Facebook, etc. have sparked. Now think of all of the people in the world without access to such innovative technologies.
This is where Textor comes in.
With Textor users can access search engines, personal accounts, and work related apps without the need of a smartphone. Users can also directly send tweets, search through Bing or broadcast group messages without the luxury of internet access.
Another important use of Textor comes during emergency situations. Our team has linked hardware and software to create what we call a broadcast button. In just one touch of a button users can send automatic distress signals or broadcast messages to groups. So not only is Textor an extremely innovative search engine and social media tool, but also an incredibly useful piece of medical equipment.
Textor is, at the very core, a platform for innovative SMS applications to enable communications without the need of the Internet. In other words, it's an app store for SMS applications. Textor provides a set of APIs so developers can easily add an app of their own logic to the platform and everything should just work. This simplifies developer's workload and gives users a seamless experience when it comes to SMS applications. In turn, a ecosystem will be built around Textor giving its users even more benefits.
To complement Textor, we build a web dashboard where users can log in and do various tasks that feels intuitive on a web interface. For example, users can see what they've searched on Bing so far. Users can also use the Fast Response app, together with the broadcast button, to monitor their loved ones' activities and be instantly notified if an emergency comes up.
Some future works would be to expose the APIs so 3rd party developers can easily add an app to the store and users can easily install it. We're also thinking of letting users linking their Facebook account and other social media sites so they can have an online social presence without the need for the Internet. Hardware interactions with Textor is also an interesting and practical topic because places where there's little to none access to the Internet or smartphones, SMS shines as a connection bridge between a piece of hardware to another.
We use Node.js for the back-end that powers the app store and serves the users. Twilio is the vendor of choice when it comes to SMS services. Our front-end is built with Angularjs and everything is hosted with Azure Virtual Machine. Raspberry Pi helped us create the broadcast button feature.