30 November 2012 | Tanya Goodin

A YEAR TO CELEBRATE – Celebrate 2012 with an advent calendar iPhone app from Tamar.

Tamar’s YEAR TO CELEBRATE iPhone advent calendar app, launches today in the iTunes app store.

The creation of the YEAR TO CELEBRATE campaign began back in October when we started to discuss our client Christmas presents and reflect on the year past. The app is at the heart of the campaign, which celebrates the highlights of what has been an incredible year for the Britain, with global events such as the Diamond Jubilee and Olympics on our doorstep.

We used social media to run a poll and find the most memorable moments of 2012 and created the iPhone appvent as the ideal platform for our clients and friends to download the app and remind ourselves of our favourite moment and ultimately lead up to what was voted THE most memorable moment of this year.


Tamar’s experienced designers and developers have been using their mobile expertise to create an app that is slick, simple and available for all.

As with all our mobile projects we followed our 3 step process:

1. AUDIENCE: We considered which handsets that our target audience own and the sort of activities they perform on them. We decided that it be fun and efficient iPhone app they could use on the train or in a break in the office. We wanted it to be festive, but with a twist, as we know that most offices are bombarded with e-cards, parcels and corporate calendars from their suppliers at this time of year.

2. USING: To be useful and encourage repeat use, we came up with the idea of an advent calendar style countdown to Christmas. Instead of showing the usual, festive robins in snow pictures, we thought we’d count down through some of the top moments of what has been an amazing year!

3. SHARING: As social media specialists we thought it would get us all in the Christmas spirit if we could share this years special moments with friends and followers through Twitter and Facebook, so we’re all counting down to Christmas together!


As always we started the project by creating wire frames to map out the user journey. We wanted the content for each day to be really easy to access and browse so we went for a scrollable user interface, both for the main views and the navigation. To open the “Doors” of the calendar the user just gives a little tap.

Of course we don’t want anyone opening doors too early so we use the iPhone’s internal clock to make sure only doors for the current and previous dates are available. We also don’t want anyone to forget to open their calendar each day, so we use local notifications to send a daily reminder.

Once our wireframes are in place we can identify which frameworks we’ll be working with. For YEAR TO CELEBRATE we’re using the social media platforms that are now integrated into the iOS so we use Apple’s social framework for Twitter and Facebook. Our developers planned the architecture of the app to support the wireframes and code in Objective C in Apple’s xCode. We find this to be the best way to work for Apple build projects and the most reliable for getting our apps approved first time. Our developers test rigorously throughout development and we have a formal testing process with a larger group of testers once they produce a beta version.

The designing and development of a mobile app is a thorough process which requires a highly skilled development team. We’ve very lucky to have such a team at Tamar who are all passionate and experienced in creating a range of different apps to meet any brief – with a particular focus on increasing brand engagement via the mobile platform.

Do go ahead and download the app today, so it’s ready and loaded on your iPhone in time for the first day of advent tomorrow. And do please contact us if you’d like to find out more about how could make 2013 the year of mobile for you.

Tanya Goodin

Tanya Goodin

Founder of Tamar