CHENNAI: It was a chance meeting. Some rides you take in a taxi that has a chatty drivers and this reporter came across one recently. But he was not just a driver; he said he was an app developer too and that piqued her interest. “I was born in family that couldn’t afford to send all three children to school.
I decided to forgo my dream of a formal education for the sake of my siblings,” says 35 year-old Isaqudin.
After doing several odd jobs for 22 years, he now works with an app-based taxi service. He came out with an app, ‘EducateOn’. The app, launched in February, is a database of all the educational institutions, play schools, tuition classes, government exam classes, music and dance classes, in Tamil Nadu.
It aims to bring all the information you would need before joining a course or a college under one server. “I keep myself updated with news and try to engage in conversations regarding education. I really want to create a change in lives of people like me who can’t afford education. I would want them to know there is always a solution; may be not a great one, but at least a feasible one, and that’s all I’m trying to provide,” he says.
Isaqudin discloses that he did not know how to operate an android phone before they developed and released the app. “I already had a website that contained the same details. But I read in newspapers that apps are in trend. Hence, I decided to do this,” he smiles.
Talking about his family Isaqudin says, “I don’t want my children to be embarrassed or distraught that their father is just a taxi driver,” he says adding that his wife was unsupportive of his idea of starting an app, as she felt that the initial investment of `1.2 lakh would be higher than the returns from it.
EducateOn is available to android users and several features are yet to be added. He has outsourced a software company to do the coding. Dilip, one of the coders who worked with him, says, “Initially, when we spoke to Isaqudin over the phone, we thought he was a business tycoon. He called and asked about parking space, so we thought he would come in a fancy car. However when he showed up, we were taken aback,” he says.
Initially, he proposed a budget of `30k to `40k, which was not workable according to the coders. “We wanted to take on the project as he really inspired us with his idea,” adds Dilip. Though the concept was thoroughly his, a lot of features that focus on targeting people have been added by the coders. The version 2.0 is expected to release in about six months and the budget has increased to `2.5 lakh, which will be
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