I had always wanted to create a social app like Snapchat, Twitter, or Facebook, so I was constantly thinking about what could be the next trend. Then, the idea occurred to me- what about the ability to spark a conversation with other people within your vicinity? This is especially useful when you do not have cell phone service. I (along with a few friends) decided to create Spark Social. Spark was the first of its kind to use Bluetooth LE to detect and send messages to those near you. Instead of gathering up the nerve to approach a stranger at a bar or concert, while facing the fear of face-to-face rejection, you could Spark a conversation with someone else looking to create a Spark using the app. Best of all, because the app used bluetooth, you could create a conversation without having any cell phone signal. You could even create a message group to keep in contact with friends at events.
I created spark using a mix of Swift and Objective-C on iOS, Java on Android, and PHP with the Symfony 3 framework on the back end. The back end was very light, which allowed for user moderation and also helped supplement the data that was being passed along bluetooth when a user had a data connection. The main app operated over bluetooth to detect the nearby users and then it was supplemented about users that were a couple miles away from the back end servers.