There’s a Mobile App for Almost Everything, Even High School

You know mobile is mainstream when your kid's high school has its own mobile app.

Fortune 500 marketers aren’t the only ones taking advantage of mobile apps these days. Smart phone technology is making new inroads into places like coffee houses, barbers and even high schools.

How mainstream is mobile? The number of people owning a smart phone rose 10 percent in three months over the summer, to 82.2 million according to comScore Inc. Out of 234 million people using mobile devices in the U.S., 35.1 percent have a “smart phone.”

What makes a phone smart is that it can run “apps” (short for “applications,” but you probably knew that).

Are you smarter than an 11th grader?

When I was in high school, there were no cell phones. As a junior I wrote for the school newspaper, and it was a big deal just to put out a paper once a month.

Now a 16-year-old junior named Zachary Christopoulos has created an app for his high school. (Boy, do I feel like an underachiever.)

The first mobile app for a high school

Tesoro High School in South Orange County is the first high school to have its own mobile app available for download on the iTunes App Store. The app is free for both iPhone and Android smart phones.

The Tesoro HS App collects school news from multiple sources to make it more easily accessible. Like Steve Jobs and other inventors, Christopoulos created his app because “It was something I wanted personally,” as he explained to the Orange County Register.

Computer science class

Christopoulos studied computer science at Tesoro during his sophomore year. Las summer he attended a week-long course on mobile app development at the University of California Irvine.

Launched in August, Christopoulos’ app provides mobile updates on school events, and integrates information from the school website, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter accounts. There are currently about 1,200 users.

Putting the app to the test

The new tech tool was put to the test early on. During a major power blackout that occurred near the beginning of this year’s school term, the Tesoro HS App sent out a push notification informing users that school would be closed as a result of the outage.

Mobile push notifications are welcome when the news is about school being closed for the day.

Programmer for hire

As you might guess, Christopoulos is aiming for a career in computer programming. Version 2.0 of the Tesoro HS App is already in the works. According to The Register, Christopoulos encourages other schools and businesses to contact him at info@zChristopoulos.com.

Now I just need a bumpersticker that says, “My kid’s high school has its own mobile app.”

6 Responses to There’s a Mobile App for Almost Everything, Even High School

  1. Debra Eckerling

    That’s pretty awesome. I love how high schools are using social and mobile for good!!!

  2. I’m jealous. I wish my highschool had that. Don’t feel too old. I also grew up in an age with no cell phones at high school or college and having to submit drafts to the school paper via a word doc.

    It’s pretty awesome that technology has advanced so much.

  3. Seems that Christopoulos is well on his way to being a programmer! Very cool ;)

  4. Soooo cool! In high school I was just learning how to type…on those old typewriters. And if you made an error you had to use whiteout or backspace and type over that white paper stuff that make the letter white when you typed it. C’mon you know what I mean! Maybe I can nudge my 7th grader to create one for middle school. And then create one for me.

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