Case Study: FireScribe

May 27, 2015 187 Views
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Case Study: FireScribe

FireScribe is a handy little app for congratulating special people in a special way. Not with simple texting, but rather with cheerful videos and congratulations appearing on the screen letter by letter as fireworks, with any selected image as a background. This touching and rather unexpected way works for any occasion, be it a birthday, Christmas, or Thanksgiving. That's quite a step away from banality. The Client already had an iOS app on the store, so ours was the making of an Android version.


We had to make a similar effective app for Android, which naturally was a harder labor, considering the multitude of devices. There also was no market research as for other similar apps. We provided the Client with a demo that showed how the inscription would appear to see whether we were moving in the right direction. We were. After the approval we continued our work with the video part, sound effects, and the firework animations.


The target audience is as diverse as possible. Everyone who loves their friends may choose this way to congratulate them – regardless of age, gender, and suchlike. This means a diversity of devices – the app would have to go through proper testing and adjustments to pass the highest quality standards. The iOS app charges a minimal upfront fee of $0,99; the same goes for Google Play.



FireScribe supports Android 4.0 and all later versions, with portrait orientation only. The devices that were used for testing are as follows:

  • • LG Nexus 5
  • • Samsung Galaxy S5, S4, S3
  • • Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini
  • • Samsung Galaxy Nexus
  • • Sony Xperia S LT26i
  • • Sony Xperia M
  • • HTC One S
  • • HTC One Mini
  • • Motorola RAZR MAXX


  • • The user creates a video by typing a congratulation text and selecting a background. As for background, there are four options: either the user selects a photo from the gallery; or from Facebook; or takes it straight away; or selects one of default backgrounds, which are professionally shot images. There are several cute emojis that can be added to the text.
  • • The resulting video is placed in the gallery. From there it can be shared via message and email, since it takes little place.


  • • Facebook integration
  • • Working with Camera/Gallery
  • • Custom views
  • • Canvas manipulations
  • • Parse and analyze SVG files
  • • OpenGL drawing using LibGDX library
  • • Particle system for sparkle effect
  • • Record video from OpenGL view using FFmpeg and OpenCV libraries
  • • Audio/video codecs
  • • Encode/decode audio sample
  • • ButterKnife library for views injection
  • • Local storage


Considering the peculiarities of the platform, it was impossible to program fireworks, so we got a designer to tackle the issue. It was a rather simple application that was quickly created and deployed on Google Play without any problems, much to the pleasure of the Client. As for the fireworks, they came out even more realistic than on the iOS version, because the designer used gif files of real fireworks as the basis. The next update of FireScribe is to optimize the recording speed on low-end Android devices.

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