Salon Today | One Salon's Killer App | Khiem Hoang for Umbrella Salon

By Stacey Soble | 02/19/2010

Khiem Hoang, business manager of Umbrella Salon in San Jose, California, was proud of the salon's artistic website, but frustrated that many clients couldn't access it through their phones. "The website is Flash-based, and iPhones in particular don't support Flash," he explained. "Since we are in the Bay Area, which also is the home of Apple, there are about 400,000 iPhone users here who couldn't access our website on their phones."

Hoang's solution was to design an iPhone application just for the salon. He researched it himself and worked to develop a simple application that featured a few photos of the salon and allowed users to directly download the salon's number, access directions to the salon and e-mail the salon desk with an appointment request. He purposefully kept the app simple: "We know they are looking at this information on a three-inch screen and we didn't want to inundate them with words."

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   A screen shot of app's Welcome Page for Umbrella Salon in San Jose, CA. Hair by Kien Hoang

 A screen shot of app's Welcome Page for Umbrella Salon in San Jose, CA. Hair by Kien Hoang