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For the past year or so I have been paying attention to both mobile app building tools such as Shoutem (Croatia), Capptain (France, backed by Russian Runa Capital) and Appsend (Romania) as well as web- and mobile- based event management and networking tools (such as Presdo or OMyConf!). So far though I was reluctant to dig into the space simply because of the sheer number of different players.
But then I learned about this new web service from Ukraine called KitApps, which offers mobile app building service for event organizers and it was the last push, especially since they have been covered by TechCrunch yesterday.
To make matters easier, today Mike Butcher wrote a separate piece on the apps and web services for event organizers, and that focused on Bizzabo, mentioning OMyConf (Russian), Oleapark, Shpare, Schmooze, gave a light criticism to Eventasaur.us and Yasmolive, and giving a real punch in the face to CrowdVine and Presdo (thanks).
So here we go, on one hand there are companies which provide an integrated web service with or without mobile location-based networking tool, and then there is there is KitApps, which allows small business owners create their own mobile apps to manage their events.
KitApps enables event organizers create a mobile app within 30 minutes to adapt event content for the mobile use, including the program, information about speakers and sponsors, as well as maps. It charges $249 per year.
Israeli Bizzabo, which is free, focuses on the event attendees helping them discover and connect with others using the mobile app and connecting their social networking profiles.
Others, like OMyConf!, a recent Startup Sauna graduate, combines the workflow and communication SaaS for event team together with a mobile app for the conference attendees. Since the platform is still in beta, there is no pricing information about it.
As for the remaining players, I will leave it to the event industry analysts to do a full product rating.
I suppose it may just make more sense for any event organizer to use a web application which offers value both for the managers and attendees, and it will be down to which service grows faster and costs less. Perhaps KitApps will find a niche within the event industry for its product, partner with a web-based conference management service or branch out into other areas where small businesses can benefit from building their own apps, in the same way Appscend does (and charges between $49 and $399 per month).
But if KitApps continues to focus on events, their ideal partner ExpoPromoter also stems from Ukraine.
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