Soaq was conceptualized and founded in 2015 by a team of people excelling in technology-based learning and development.
The co-founders at Soaq, including Daniel Wolfe, considered the rising popularity of online video ( YouTube, Vimeo, and Snapchat ) and felt it was time to develop an intelligent video platform that would introduce the power of video to the workplace. Daniel approached Net Solutions to develop a corporate YouTube-style, "Video-On-Demand" platform.
The idea was to build a video platform with a powerful recommendation engine, flexible access, and permissions system, dynamic filters, and a tracking system, and various other distict features.
The first challenge was to ensure that the employees would enjoy using the platform. We had to ensure that the video sharing and collection was designed in a way that it becomes a fun learning activity, instead of an additional task to complete.
The other challenge was that the content had to be streamlined according to the teams, sub-set of users, and individuals. Also, the videos pushed by recommendation engines had to be specific for every user within each individual organization
Our Product Owner team ideated and brainstormed on this and came up with a concept of "unique permissions". We planned that each permission would have its own priority and place to get displayed on the site. Also, in order to not bombard the users with too many irrelevant videos, we introduced the concept of dynamic filters. This helped in filtering out the users on the basis of location, department, employee status, personality types, or any other custom attributes.
We also ensured that the Soaq homepage mosaic would allow users to distinguish easily between the mandatory videos, and the most relevant ones. This helps the admin users of Soaq or any other organization, check excuses made by employees when they missed out on watching any required videos.
After a series of brainstorm sessions both internally and with the client, our Product Owner and User Experience teams came up with a great user flow which was intuitive, complete, and easy for users to adopt.
The project was done with an Agile team engagement model. The client realized that they needed a team who understands all aspects of product development, with demonstrated analysis, design, and technical capabilities.
We first prepared a proof of concept ( POC ) for the client that they approved and decided to go ahead with the collaboration. The product was developed using Agile and Scrum methodologies, the focus was to define and develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and release it to the target audience for feedback and then iterate. The MVP was a huge success and had quite a good number of successful releases after that.
We used an AWS transcoder for transcoding videos and OPlayer for playing them.
We also implemented a third-partly recommendation engine and customized it to strengthen the recommendations. There are lot of factors on which the videos need to be recommended – all the factors were brainstormed and analyzed before finalizing the recommendation engine and we finally selected Prediction IO.
We used AngularJS to develop the front-end. Play Framework 2.3, Scala 2.11, Netty and Reactive Mongo Extensions 0.10.2 were used for including the non-blocking, and reactive platform features. We used SendGrid for sending emails to users.
The last 7 years working with Net Solutions has really re-enforced our decision to not only outsource but to continue working with them as our partner. We are looking forward to many successful years in this partnership and without hesitation I recommend Net Solutions to any team who is looking forward to scale up and increase their capabilities.
The video platform evaluator is a quick tool to help you identify the components you may
need for your video platform depending on the specific use case you have in mind