Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Bridgestone Retorque App to be rolled out in four more languages following huge success of English version

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RNF Digital Innovation have been commission to build four different language versions (Spanish, Portuguese, Italian andRomanian) of the Retorque App that won a prestigious Bridgestone EMEA award for Outstanding Corporate Citizenship in recognition of the role it plays in making roads safer.

The app was launched in late 2015 and has already been downloaded over 3000 times.  With up to 12 people being killed on roads each year through detaching wheels due to incorrect torque, the app is a simple and easy-to-use tool that provides the individual Original Equipment Manufacturers’ wheel nut torque recommendations for commercial vehicle operators ensuring the correct torque is applied.

Rob Mannion, RNF Digital Innovation Managing Director said, “The fact this is being rolled out into four further languages is testimony to the effective role mobile can play in the enterprise and how it can be used for real good.”

Andy Mathias, TBR Product & Marketing Manager at Bridgestone UK & Ireland, said, “We’ve seen huge demand for the app across our EMEA locations and believe it is making a real difference to the safety of our roads.  Given the important role it plays, we naturally wanted to extend that to a non-English speaking audience.”

RNF Digital Innovation wins Best App Developer at global awards

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RNF Digital Innovation beat off strong competition from the likes of Apalon, B60, E-Legion and Roller Agency to win Best App Developer at the globally renowned Appster Awards in London last night.

The Annual Appster Awards celebrate and recognise outstanding performance and innovation achieved by companies across the mobile app ecosystem.

Judges from Unilever, Treatwell, TUI Group, OTAMate Technology Ltd, Skyscanner, Telegraph Media Group, cloudBuy and TMT Intelligence awarded RNF the award for outstanding work, innovation and success in the world of app development.

Rob Mannion, Managing Director of RNF Digital Innovation, said “We’re really proud to have received this award. It gives the team the recognition they deserve for all the hard work that has gone into the last year and highlights how not being afraid to try new and innovative ways of working can really pay off.”

To win the accolade RNF had to demonstrate how it delivered outstanding and innovative work in the world of app development, flying the flag for developers everywhere.

Rob continued: “The award recognised how our early adoption of the React Native Framework has played a key part driving impressive growth figures – enabling customers to develop native apps across multiple operating systems and the web more easily and cost-effectively than before.

“The judges were also impressed by the campaign management tool, BEAM, we developed for Bestway Wholesale, which delivers content triggered by user behaviour, geofences or iBeacons to increase footfall or transactions made on the existing Bestway mobile app.

“The platform enables Bestway to tailor messages to their app audience based on customer behaviour and location has proved particularly successful increasing the impact of the app and driving best practice when it comes to managing user data.”

The Appsters Awards bring together the App industry to celebrate excellence in Apps and those creatively pushing forward the rapidly-growing industry. The awards take place at Apps World – one of the leading global, multi-platform events in the mobile industry that brings together over 5000 developers, mobile marketers, mobile operators, device manufacturers, platform owners and industry professionals over two days at ExCeL London.

RNF Digital Innovation nominated for Best App Developer at the globally renowned Appsters

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appstersRNF Digital Innovation have been nominated in the Best App Developer at this year’s Appsters.

The globally renowned Annual Appster Awards celebrates and recognises outstanding performance and innovation achieved by companies for the latest developments across the mobile app ecosystem.

To be nominated as Best App Developer RNF needed to demonstrate how they have triumphed over adversity, delivered outstanding and innovative work in the world of app development and essentially been flying the flag for developers everywhere.

Over 72 companies applied and the awards ceremony will take place on Wednesday 19th October after the first day of Apps World at the ExCel London.

Rob Mannion, RNF Digital Innovation Managing Director said, “This is great recognition of the hard work the team at RNF have been putting in over the past 12 months. Our business and client base is growing and we’re leading the way with innovative working practices such as React Native. We’re really excited to have been nominated and hope to take home the award on the night.”

For more information about the awards visit


RNF to Deliver Mobile Innovation into High-End London Boxing Gym BXR

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RNF Digital Innovation is pleased to announce a brand new partnership with newly formed high-end London boxing gym brand BXR.

BXR is collaboration with Rob Piela, the mastermind behind New York’s cult gym, Gotham in New York.  BXR London, will be launching in the heart of Marylebone in early 2017.

RNF will be developing a website ( and an app for the brand to support membership.  The app will act as a member’s entry card, allow them to book classes and appointments with trainers and therapists and even pay for food and drink whilst at the gym.  In addition it will sell BXR sportswear and provide valuable member analytics allowing BXR to manage its customer relationships more effectively.

Rob Mannion, RNF Digital Innovation Managing Director, said: “This is a really exciting project to be involved in as it once again allows RNF to showcase their expertise in cutting edge app and web development.”

BXR Founders said “We were really impressed with RNF’s capabilities and were especially interested in the technology they use to develop their apps and the quality of the end product, which for us, with our exclusive target audience, was absolutely key.”

Bestway Cash and Carry iBeacon App Campaign Shortlisted for “Mobile Innovation” Award

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New Thinking Awards Logo

We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the “Mobile Innovation” category at the New Thinking Awards, sponsored by Sky Media. This is particularly pleasing as the awards pride themselves in  spotlighting organisations that are challenging the status quo in terms of innovation and cultural change.

The awards will be judged by a highly experienced and illustrious panel of judges on the 28th September.

Baxi partners with RNF to drive business innovation through apps

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baxiRNF Digital Innovation has been chosen by Baxi to help realise its ambition to lead the boiler market in terms of innovation.

The partnership is a direct result of the newly founded Tech Central initiative that brings local government, education, and businesses together to expand the digital economy in Warwickshire.  It showcases the county as a hub of innovation, capable of rivalling London’s Tech City.

Baxi’s Genuine Parts General Manager, David Willetts, heads up the Baxi Heating innovation programme.  He has been exploring how the Company can continually innovate to help set it apart from the competition, and specifically how working with local partners to help support the local economy.  A Tech Central networking event bought the two companies together.

Rob Mannion, RNF Digital Innovation Managing Director, said: “We have been working for some time with local blue-chip companies such as Calor Gas and Bridgestone Tyres on their mobile business strategies. We are leading the way with mobile innovation through the use of new location technologies such as iBeacons and Geofences navigation technology and by adopting new development frameworks like React Native that allow us to develop enterprise-grade apps in record time. Baxi wanted a local partner that could help it on its journey and we’re delighted that it has chosen RNF due to our first-class credentials.”

Dave Willetts said “It’s great to discover a mobile tech company right on our doorstep that not only has the experience to deliver a mobile strategy into our business, but also shares our vision of continuously innovating.  We believe the partnership will be beneficial to both parties for many years to come.”

Getting ahead of the competition using Geofences


Dashboard   portisco

Since the successful launch of the Bunker Buoy fuel quotation app two years ago, RNF have been working with the company to give port agents a competitive edge.

Port agents help luxury superyacht crews obtain everything from basic supplies through to hard to come by theatre tickets and everything in between.  Knowing in advance that a particular superyacht is on its way into port would give a particular agent an advantage over the competition.

Using RNF’s bespoke ‘intelligent’ mobile engagement platform Beam, 25 luxury marinas worldwide have been geofenced so that when a superyacht enters the geofence a notification is sent to the crew giving them details of the local port agent and their various services.  In addition, participating port agents are automatically notified that a potential customer is about to arrive meaning they have a chance to get ahead of the game and secure the business.

Neil Miller, Founder and ‘Head Buoy’ of Bunker Buoy, said: “Extending our offer to a wider range of port services than just fuel was the natural progression for Bunker Buoy. The Beam mobile engagement platform has allowed us to not only add an enhanced customer experience for our App users, but also to give port agents a competitive edge. Everyone’s a winner.]

Rob Mannion, Managing Director of RNF Digital Innovation who have developed the Beam platform said: “Geofencing adds an exciting level of customer engagement and our Beam platform is the perfect way to manage this new technology.”

Overview of Beacon Options in 2015/2016

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Apple’s iBeacon

ibeaconThe original “beacon” standard, iBeacon is Apple’s branding for a Bluetooth Low Emission (BLE) protocol, which is essentially a standard for emitting a three-component identifier consisting of UUID, Major ID and Minor ID. The identifier is sometimes referred to as unique, but in fact any number of beacons can be configured with the same identifier. This permits a degree of redundancy.

Two other ways in which a beacon’s configuration can vary, according to this standard, are the interval and the transmission power (txPower) at which the identifier is emitted. If a particular beacon manufacturer offers any other configuration options, then these will generally be vendor-specific. The beacon’s battery level is typically also available, though the format of this information is not part of the iBeacon standard – something that along with other forms of telemetry (status) information is likely to change in the future.

Because the basic iBeacon standard does not allow for any more information to be included in the communication between a beacon and a detecting device, it is down to the device to make sense of the identifier. Applications therefore invariably use the identifier to look up some information. The information may be held on the device itself or it may be held on a server, with the content of interest being returned via an API.

Though iBeacon is a trademark of Apple, any device capable of BLE, which communicates the aforementioned identifiers, can participate in iBeacon-based applications. This includes Android and Windows devices and not just Apple’s i-devices.

One further observation is that Apple’s devices (the more recent generations of devices, at least) are themselves iBeacons. This can also lead to some interesting applications.

All of the leading beacon manufacturers support the iBeacon protocol.

Google’s Eddystone

eddystone-460wGoogle’s answer to iBeacon is Eddystone. It relies on the same type of hardware as iBeacon. However, beacons supporting the Eddystone protocol, instead of emitting a three-component identifier, emit an opaque ID, a URL and telemetry information called Eddystone-UID, Eddystone-URL and Eddystone-TLM respectively.

If an Eddystone beacon communicates a URL to an app, then this can be used directly. This is in contrast to iBeacon’s three-component identifier, which is typically used to look up some information – often a URL. Eddystone therefore potentially bypasses one technical step (the lookup), though this by itself does not result in any benefit for the end user.

By standardising the communication of telemetry information, such as battery level, Eddystone has also addressed a shortcoming of the current version of the iBeacon standard, which leaves the format of this information to the Beacon vendor (making it somewhat more arduous to manage suits of beacons from different vendors.)

Samsung’s Placedge

placeedgeThough interest in beacon-based applications is growing, one of the biggest inhibitors to uptake is the fact that, in order to profit from the presence of beacons, one needs a dedicated app to listen out for them. No app, no notification.

To address this problem, Samsung announced a technology in 2014, which they call Placedge. Samsung phones – only Samsung phones with a special extension baked into a proprietary version of Android – listen out for any specially configured beacon in their vicinity. Thus a store could potentially send messages to customers, even if the customer has never downloaded the store’s mobile app.

This concept is obviously particularly appealing to organisations, which do not have an app, and which have no intention or ability to create one. It is also of interest to organisations that do have an app, and would like an opportunity to inform potential users of its existence.

However, the approach undoubtedly increases the risk of targeting members of the public, who have absolutely no interest whatsoever in being targeted. This, in turns, risks alienation, rather than providing something useful.

A further shortcoming of the Placedge solution is that it targets only Samsung device owners, losing out on a large swath of iOS users as well as owners of other Android devices.

These shortcomings may explain why very little time has been given to Placedge in the tech media since its launch.

Bestway Mobile app downloaded 10,000 times

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IMG_5926_iphone6_spacegrey_side2The Bestway mobile app launched in September last year has now reached the milestone of having been downloaded 10,000 times by businesses across the UK,  providing more evidence that the group remain the leader when it comes to digital technology within the wholesale sector.

The award-winning app boasts a host of functions including previous order history and in-built product scanner with real-time product catalogue and availability details.

RNF’s Managing Director Rob Mannion says “This is a significant milestone for the Bestway Group and we look forward to delivering many new exciting updates throughout the year. Since its launch the app has continually evolved to improve the customer experience, ensuring it remains at the forefront of any comparable services within the sector”

The app, which is available and free to download for Apple and Android devices, now accounts for around 17% of the group’s total online sales and is the preferred method of ordering for 30% of users who either click and collect from their depot or have ordered stock delivered to their business.

Dawood Pervez, marketing director of Bestway is delighted by the uptake from customers; “When we launched the Bestway mobile app last year, the whole idea was to make it as simple as possible for customers to do business with the Bestway and Batleys ensuring that they could browse and order whenever and wherever they chose to. To have the app downloaded 10,000 times is not only a great success for the group but also shows how customers are embracing new technologies to help them trade more profitably in the changing face of retail. We will continue to innovate and bring new solutions both online and in-depot to make sure that we continue to meet the needs of our valued customers.”

RNF Digital Innovation shortlisted in the national eCommerce Awards for Excellence

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The eCommerce Awards for Excellence, in association with Chase Paymentech, celebrate the very best the industry has to offer from innovations and campaigns to customer service excellence and revenue growth.

RNF has been shortlisted alongside House of Fraser, John Lewis, Toys ‘R’ Us, New Look, ASOS, Fortnum and Mason, Superdrug and Laura Ashley, and will compete for the Best B2B Ecommerce award.

It has been shortlisted for his work with the Bestway cash and carry company. RNF has devised, developed and delivered an app for Bestway which is now operated across its 62 centres, and a new iBeacon system which directly gives each Bestway customer personalised information.

The Bestway shopping app, which features an internal barcode scanner and access to over 20,000 products with real-time price changes, has now been downloaded more than 10,000 times and is regarded as the leading app in the wholesale sector.

RNF has also rolled out iBeacon technology to all 63 Bestway depots which allows personalised information to be directed to customers based on their exact location, the time of day, and can be influenced by their previous shopping history and many other parameters such as customer type or even the weather!

The system is managed is through the BEAM Platform, also devised by RNF, which has received financial backing from Innovate UK.

Rob Mannion, RNF Digital Innovation Managing Director, said:  “We have been delighted that the app and the iBeacon technology has made such an impact.

“Bestway have really been leading the charge with this technology, and is causing waves throughout the wholesale and retail industry leading to some very encouraging enquiries.

“We are alongside some leading industry names for these awards and it will be an opportunity for us to showcase just how we can help companies improve their service offerings with the effective deployment of mobile technology.”

The winners will be announced at a ceremony in London on September 30

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