The common excuses people give for not doing any physical activity is that they either don’t have time or there is no sports facility close enough to where they live. Where2play is an app developed in Chennai that allows people to find and book slots at sports centres based on their proximity of location. Muralidhar Sreedharan and Mahesh Kumar V have been childhood friends and also ardent badminton fans, a sport they passionately played when they were in college.
They continued to be associated with the sport as both of them managed a sports academy, apart from their day-time jobs. “We realised that there is no organised data when it comes to sports centres or facilities in the city. People often do an online search and go with the first three results they find. We’d get several calls at our Tejesh Sports Academy, inquiring about free slots. If we said there were no slots available, they’d immediately ask for another option,” says Mahesh, who adds that most people are likely to lose interest if their requirements are not met.
They were mulling over the idea of creating a platform that would be a one-stop destination for sports. “We realised that there are many who’d like to play a sport during the weekend. But they don’t know where to go. So we decided to work on an app, Where2Play that will give complete information about sports centres in the city, with the location closer to the user’s address appearing first,” explains Mahesh. He adds that they also kept in mind the fact that parents will want to send their child to a sports centre that is closer home.
They have collaborated with many courts and academies in Chennai where enthusiasts can book a slot. “We have an extensive list of courts. However, we have collaborated with sports facilities for whom we facilitate bookings for various slots. Those visiting the site or app can also check the photographs and other facilities provided. They can also get directions. There is a payment gateway too. We have made the list only after personally checking everything ourselves,” says Muralidhar.
Talking about the challenges in designing the app, they say, “We had to personally approach every academy and convince them to come on board, assuring them that we will manage to get them patrons for slots that are usually less cramped. This also allows housewives who have a small window of time to come out of their houses and practise a sport. The users can also register for tournaments. The app, which is available at the Apple Store and Google Play, can be also accessed on where2play.in