Oak Leafers get mobile

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Derry GAA have continued to maintain their place at the forefront of the association’s communications developments with the creation of a mobile version of their county website alongside a new Web application for iPhone and iPad devices.

The Oak Leaf team have long been recognised as one of Ulster’s best in terms of online communications through their use of social media and the development of a YouTube channel to carry interviews with players and management. The development of the mobile site and web platform is the latest stage in an on-line strategy which is designed to ensure maximum engagement with the Gaels of Derry. County PRO Chris McCann explained the thinking behind this latest development. “We took this initiative recognising the increased use of mobile phones (smart phones) for accessing the internet,” he explained, “The model we’ve adopted ensures that all mobile devices are covered giving our supporters access to the very latest developments in Derry GAA in real-time. This is the exact same content as our website but tailored for mobile devices. “This approach negates the need for logistically difficult and costly implementations of bespoke software for each platform (Android, Blackberry, Apple/iOS etc). The Web app for iPhones and iPads gives our users the experience of using an app without the need for installs, downloads or upgrades.”

And the Oak Leaf county have offered to ‘enable’ others within the GAA to avail of the same functionality at no cost. “This is quick to install for whoever looks after your website, and is easily configurable meaning that for a large proportion of GAA websites out there, they can be given this mobile makeover in a matter of hours or days. It’s also something which requires no extra maintaince once setup and is something we’d like to share with the wider GAA family,” explained McCann. For county chairman, John Keenan, communication is the driver. “From my experience both in the GAA and outside, communication is key. We have taken this step as part of an on-going strategy to give our supporters and patrons, both at home and abroad, the most up-to-date information possible. We revamped our website last year and this new development takes us one step further.” “All of our IT development is done on a voluntary basis - something we’re extremely proud of. We are fully aware of the costs associated with development of this nature and this is one of the main reasons why we want to make this available to others who are interested. We believe the GAA is about what you put in, not what you take out,” he added.