COBH has launched a new app that will help tourists and locals make the most of the picturesque town.
The new phone app, which will be available for free in the next few days from the Google Play Store and from the Apple App Store, has a number of sections covering topics including shopping, local attractions, walks, useful contacts, as well as places to stay, eat and drink.
Launched in recent days at The Commodore Hotel with Minister of State David Stanton in attendance, it is hoped the app will encourage people to explore Cobh all year round.
Minister Stanton said: “This is a hugely exciting innovation that has huge potential. Through apps like this, we can promote towns like Cobh as great places to live, work in and visit.”
Cobh is following in the footsteps of Fermoy, Midleton and Youghal which all launched place-specific apps in 2018.
Speaking at the launch, Fermoy native Colin Hanley of the Galway-based Boon Agency — the company behind the development and ongoing roll-out of the town-app initiative — said it would be rolled out across Munster in phases over the coming months.
Mr Hanley said that as the different phases of the app are rolled out, it will also offer additional sections, including in-app purchases, a clubs/schools section, local alerts and the ability to pre-book digital tickets for events taking place in the Cobh and East Cork area.
It will also incorporate a ‘click and collect’ function for local businesses that will be integrated with existing online payment systems.
“Our focus has been on developing these town apps and creating a digital infrastructure that businesses can plug into without having to develop it themselves, which can be a costly business. Our aim is to create online experiences that make it easy for people to do business in a town and turn visitors on the app into paying customers,” said Mr Hanley.
He said that towns of Cobh’s size can often be overlooked when it comes to the development of technology and apps as they can often be viewed as being financially unviable.
Mr Hanley said the app costs in the region of €15,000 to develop for each location, with McCarthy Insurance Group (MIG) coming on board to provide a start-up grant for each town in Munster where it is rolled out.
Cobh Credit Union has come on board with the local team of Fr Liam Kelleher and Kieran Walsh of Cobh News and Great Island Media who will update the app each week.
Mr Paul Kavanagh of McCarthy Insurance Group agreed, saying it was now up to the local community to buy into the app and make it work. He said that it was decided to take the idea further to incorporate all the town has to offer.