This new app solves a real world problem for Mongolian horse breeders and herders.
Mongolia has a long and storied history with horses, and Mongolians are still big on breeding and owning horses today. However, owning so many equines makes it hard to keep track of all of them. That's why a team of Mongolian mobile developers designed an iOS app, called ???? ("seller"), to help.
While many picture Mongolia as a remote and rural country, most Mongolians actually live in urban areas, and its capital, Ulaanbaatar, abounds with coworking spaces, hackathons, and startup accelerators. However, beyond the cities, modern-day nomads still raise goats, sheep, cattle yaks and horses the same way that their ancestors did.
Horse racing is one of the most popular pastimes for both groups, however when it comes to breeding and selling race horses, a lack of proper records often becomes problematic during sales transactions.
That's where ???? comes in. The app helps horse owners document their animals by allowing them to upload photos of each horse, as well as data on their lineage, racing history, age, sex, and health conditions. Best of all, it can be used even when there's no cell service, which is a common issue for herders working in remote areas.
It also provides an online community for Mongolia's estimated 50,000 die-hard horse racing fans, allowing them to follow their favorite horses.
In an interview with Motherboard, Artur Byambadorj, one of the app's creators, said:
"We see the app as an important tool for herders, and also a news source for racing fans ... We want it to become the Facebook for herders that they will use daily."
The app seems to be well on its way to that goal. Just released in mid-June, and still in its beta phase of development, it has already been downloaded hundreds of times.
Of course it still can't entirely prevent fraud among buyers and sellers, but the team hopes to eventually integrate a microchipping product to pair with the app, which would verify the identify of each horse, and allow for GPS tracking.
It can be downloaded for free on iTunes, and an Android version will be available in September.
What do you think of this horse-based app? Tell us in the comments below!
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