Tidbit Social: How we built a successful social network for foodies

Turpial Development
Apr 3, 2018 · 4 min read

Without gaining much weight and loosing just a bit of sleep.

Tidbit is social network for foodies that gives you personalized restaurant recommendations based on your preferences and your friends ratings on individual dishes, developed by Turpial.

Edit: Tidbit Social won a prize at eMerge Americas.

Project: Tidbit Social
URL: http://www.tidbitsocial.com /
Type of project: Social Network: Mobile app, Back-end server / Website
Delivery: Noviembre 2017
Tools: Ionic, Django, React Native, Test Driven Development

Have you ever visited a restaurant and ordered a dish, just because a friend or acquaintance recommended it? We think you have, and the entrepreneurs behind Tidbit Social certainly have too; that’s why they decided to build a social network that does just that: recommend dishes to you not based on some strangers taste, but in the strange taste of your closest friends and family.

Turpial started to work on Tidbit Social in 2016 when Washington, DC-based entrepreneurs came to us with this idea. An idea that was conceived during a meal, and written on a napkin as some of the best ideas are. The napkin was discarded during that same meal, but someone had the reasonable sense to remember it and the rest is the app’s history.

How is Tidbit Social different from other restaurant apps? The rating system is way different than the used in other apps: the reviews are obtained from your friends and the score and comments they give to individual dishes of a restaurant. The scores are tailored to your preferences for smarter recommendations of where and what to eat.

We worked using agile methodologies. With daily standup meetings, planning the work for each iteration based on the importance and risk of user stories prioritized by the client to make sure everyone was on the same page and with the same vision.

Unlike most of our projects, this time the client had already hired another agency to develop their brand identity and design their user interface. Turpial always assign at least one interface designer to every project, to help bridge the other agency’s design for our developers. This helped a lot, as the external team was less experienced in UI/UX design as they were with branding and marketing, and we contributed in the overall design of the interface and user experience as well as supporting programmers through the project.

After the client validated an initial version of the app, as internal releases grew in complexity they began fall behind the initial performance. So we did a big refactoring moving the codebase from Ionic to React Native in few but intense days of up hard work, but they were worth it.

In the final weeks of the project three memebers of the project team of six, briefly moved from our south-american offices to Washington, DC. Why? because we wanted to work more closely with the client, stakeholders and users on the final details before delivery, to give him exactly what he wanted and needed. This made it possible to present the complete project in its first delivery in June 2017.

The Tidbit Social app

The main functions of Tidbit Social are:

  • Restaurant ratings tailored to you, based on your friends and preferences
  • Qualifications based on your social network
  • Quick Rate: Shows the 5 restaurants closest to you and the average rating for each of them.

Tidbit Social also lets you explore foodies highlights, users by their real name or username and Featured Restaurants based on ratings or trends around your area. There’s a map with the restaurants that are near you, other cities to explore and filters by: area, price, type of food, rating of your friends and if you have visited before.

You earn trophies by rating dishes and restaurants showing off your fluency with different cuisines. Other functions include a Score Explorer that helps you filter places according to your own scores, a Wish List of restaurants you want to visit and a list of your Followers and people who you follow.

Tidbit Social was a fun app to develop, it currently has more than 11,000 registered restaurants, with Washington, DC and New York City the most active towns on Tidbit Social and boasting a 4.8/5 stars rating at the App Store and 4.5 at the Google Play store.

Download Tidbit Social from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store

For inquiries about our development and design services, e-mail us at hola@turpialdev.com.

You can also visit us on the web: turpialdev.com or instagram, linkedin, facebook, twitter