App roundup: Let them eat cake (while rowing)
Written by Donald A. Promnitz
Two Fresno-based web applications are seeing their day in the sun — one making its debut to rowers and another, a Cake Boss.
Taking the cake
A Fresno-made app has been taking off in a big way, and more recently, found its way to a famous bakery franchise on the East Coast.
Developed at Bitwise Industries in Downtown Fresno, Ordrslip was created as a way for restaurant owners to better connect with their customers by showing what’s on the menu, and allowing them to order via mobile for pickup. According to product officer Miguel Alarcon, it also allows the restaurant to have what they can’t get from a service like Grubhub or Uber Eats — a custom app.
Ordrslip has already been growing steadily on the local level since their 2017 debut. Some well-known establishments like Quesadilla Gorilla and Harris Ranch have already signed on. Their biggest client yet, however, is on the other side of the country.
In New York City, Carlo’s Bake Shop has started using the Ordrslip app to make the customer experience easier for its newest location in Times Square. Originating in Hoboken, New Jersey, Carlo’s Bake Shop has gained fame through the TLC reality show “Cake Boss,” starring Carlo’s owner Bartolo “Buddy” Valastro Jr. Ordrslip began discussions with the franchise last year, when communications were established between them and Manager Jordan Sanchez.
The app went live on Feb. 15, and since then, Ordrslip has been doing live testing. Alarcon said so far, it’s been highly successful.
“They’re really good about giving us feedback, and we’re really responsive with getting them whatever they need to help with that,” Alarcon said. “Our entire on-boarding process is very personal, and that’s kind of the way we like it. I think they’ve enjoyed that as well.”
Currently, the Times Square bakery is the only location to use the Ordrslip app. However, they’ve been getting positive reception, and Alarcon said they’re being signed up for all 15 locations.
Row your boat
Those seeking the full-body workout of a rowing routine will soon have access to a new app that will help them map out their regimens and progress — and it’s being developed in Fresno.
Created by Shift3 Technologies in partnership with Fresno personal trainer Wayne Harlan, Row Forge is designed to digitally connect to the popular Concept 2 rowing machine via. Once connected, the user of the app can begin rowing and after their workout, Row Forge calculates such data as energy spent and calories burned to help create a workout regimen for the person doing the exercise. Both Harlan and J.P. Prendergast, development manager for Shift3, compared the app to having a personal trainer on one’s phone.
Harlan, who also runs a gym in Fresno called Live Fit, said that rowing is one of four workouts that strengthens the cardiovascular system, the others being cross-country skiing, cycling, and running. He further explained that the rowing regimen was one based on a program developed by rower and fitness expert Dr. Kenneth Jay, who determined that rowing was the most effective form of exercise for the entire body. The difference is that where a personal trainer or gym membership can cost hundreds of dollars a year, Row Forge comes in at $9.99/month, or an annual rate of $99.99.
“So we’re using like 90 percent musculature, which is quite a bit,” Harlan said. “We could say that rowing uses more muscles than any other activity on the planet all at once.”
Currently, Row Forge is only available on the Concept 2 rower. However, Prendergast noted that there has been a strong connection made between Shift3 and Harlan with talks of a possible app for other equipment.
“And could we expand beyond that? Absolutely,” Prendergast said. “As long as the exercise equipment gathers that data and we have something good to compare and prescribe with it, then we could really make it scalable on that as well.”
Prendergast said that Row Forge is expected to launch within the next week or two.