One thing that I observed as a student in University is that the timetable was perhaps the most inconsistent, unreliable and mostly inconvenient thing that was ever created. I mean, a month into the semester and changes were still being made. It was very frustrating to the point that I stopped keeping track and rather followed my friend around who not only had impeccable memory, but also somehow kept track of all the changes. If you don’t have a friend like that, AirKlip will have your back.
Over time people come up with ways to manage the classroom. The most common method in my opinion is the use of Whatsapp. With a class Whatsapp group, changes to the timetable are communicated and any assignments or tasks given are announced there as well. This is the status quo. But this has its pitfalls. Anyone can post anything on the group. Maybe one of your classmates is messing with you guys and says there is a lecturer in class angry because no one showed up for his class and yet this class wasn’t scheduled, sending you into a panic. Plus an assignment is given but once the conversation goes on you can easily forget about reading that message.
AirKlip tries to become your time organizer by making sure you are not left behind or pranked. So what do you get once you install AirKlip?
- Can organize and download your class timetable to your phone
- A day-to-day view of your weekly timetable
- Notify you of any changes made to the timetable
- Send a reminder just before your class begins
- Allow you to add tasks and assignments.
How it works
Once you have downloaded AirKlip and verified your phone number, you are then prompted to choose the school, course, year and semester you are currently enrolled on. At the time of writing this article, 7 schools are currently supported which are 3 more than those that were supported when I downloaded the app a couple of weeks back. These are Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Mount Kenya University, Technical University of Kenya, Strathmore University, Maasai Mara University, South Eastern Kenya University and Kenya College of Accounting. This just means that even if your school is not listed here, just download it and keep an eye out, updates are happening quite fast.
Anyway, once you select your school, then specify on the course, current year that you are in and then the semester you are enrolled for. Once that data is captured, the timetable is downloaded and you can now see the how your day is.
From the menu on the right, you can view your classes in a day-to-day view, add tasks (assignment, project, term paper etc.) for a specific unit and set reminders on when they are due. You can also see a breakdown of the units you are enrolled for that semester.
When it comes to changes or announcements, only a class representative can do this on the application. A code is sent to the class representative who can then access added features. For now the class representative can communicate any changes made to the timetable, or any messages coming from the lecturer.
The app is also beautifully designed with frequent updates, improving the overall user experience.
The application currently is on beta testing stage but by January 10 2016, they will officially launch the application with loads of new and smarter features. Currently, the timetables are being manually inputted by the developers but once launched, the class representatives will be able to automatically load the timetable from an excel document. Furthermore they will be able add tasks and assignments which will be accessible to all the students enrolled for the course. They will also add a social aspect to the application, whereby, the application will inform you of any events happening around that your classmates will be attending. Sharing of documents relevant to classwork is also something that the developers are keen on adding to the application.
Currently the application is free for use and only available for Android. Once it is officially launched in January 10th next year, students will have to subscribe for the service for Kshs 100 per semester, with the option of paying Kshs 249 for a year’s subscription
The vision for the application is for it to be a personal assistant and time manager for the student. Many students have other things to do in a day other than studying. Some are interning, working or running businesses(or just chilling somewhere random!) . Having a tool that reduces the uncertainty of the school program will allow one to manage their time better. This is what the developers are developing the application to do. They want it to be a one-stop shop for everything that a student wants. Everything from your school work, time manager to keeping you up to date with whats going on around you.
What I like from the application is its potential value. It is not a simple timetable app. With proper development and strategy, this can be a student’s best friend and ultimate tool. As long as the developers are willing to spend their time and resources on its development, which they are doing so far, the possibilities are endless.
Obvious competition for the application is of course the status quo. You already have options that work which are free. Whatsapp groups and email groups for sharing documents are what people are used to. However, the developers say that the convenience and reliability provided for by the application as opposed to the current unregulated platforms is something that they feel will get people to use the application.