As the holiday season approaches, Christmas shoppers who purchase big-ticket items may be walking up to the checkout with one big worry in their gut: “What if this drops in price?”
Well, you could return it, but you’d have to know somehow that the price went down. And that’s where "Catsh.In" comes in.
Five international students at Dal — Anuj Shah, Deepika Agarwal and Nilofer Mehta of the Master of Applied Computer Science program, and Katharina Glorius and Carol Tian in the Faculty of Management — have developed a mobile app called Catsh.in (pronounced like "cash in") that alerts users when a product they’ve recently purchased has gone on sale.
The nifty app is now competing in an international competition knows as the Global Startup Battle.
Representing Nova Scotia
The Catsh.In team first debuted its product at last week’s Startup Weekend Halifax. Entrepreneurs from around the city were allotted 54 hours to produce successful prototypes and a business strategy.
Catsh.in placed second in the competition. The winners, also Dal students, were the team behind a computer plug-in called “Nudge It” that prompts users to get away from their screen if they’ve been at it too long. The Nudge It team chose not to participate in the next phase of the competition, however, meaning that Catsh.In is now going for global glory.
The Global Startup Battle features Startup Weekend teams from more than 150 cities worldwide. With partners including Google for Entrepreneurs, Amazon and Coca Cola, the competition takes place during Global Entrepreneurship Week, with prizes including a trip to Google’s headquarters in San Francisco.
The current phase of the competition is a public vote: anyone can select which of the 150 projects they think should move onto the final round, which is a judging panel.
As the only team from Nova Scotia, Catsh.in’s members say they’re honoured to be representing their university and province, but there’s still a lot of work to do.
“It’s a great opportunity for us,” says Mehta. “Securing second place in the local competition was a pretty big step. We were excited, but at the same time we want to remain grounded and continue working on developing a world-class application.”
Mehta says when developing the app, the team looked at two major issues shoppers face when purchasing an item: they’re not always aware when a product they’ve purchased goes on sale, and shoppers who are aware of sales sometimes lose their receipts.
Catsh.in solves both issues. Using the app, shoppers can scan the receipt of their purchased items. Catsh.in will alert them when the price of that item has dropped within the “Price Guarantee Policy.”
If a shopper loses their receipt, a copy is available on their mobile device.
‘We have a great idea and a great team,” says Mehta. “Winning this competition will provide us with all the resources we need to help people save money quickly.”
Think Catsh.in sounds like a good idea? You can vote for their entry in the Global Startup Battle between November 27 and December 6. You can vote once every 24 hours.
To vote, visit the Catsh.in page on the Global Startup Battle website. Click "+1" and you'll be prompted to register for the website, after which you can submit your "+1" vote.
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