Case Study

As food culture expands, consumers now expect to craft a culinary adventure unique to their tastes. Seeing this trend, a New York entrepreneur came to FM with a novel idea: create the Pearl app that connects oyster lovers and learners with restaurants serving oysters nearby. From initial ideation to the iOS app launch, we worked on the project and got captured by NY Times, USA Today, and Forbes.

Food Sourcing

Business Strategy

Experience Design

Agile Development

Analytics & Insights

Technology Used


Parse /Back4App



Client feedback

“You don’t have to pick a restaurant based on reviews or reservations: you can choose where you dine that night based on the exact oyster that you want to eat.”

Amy McKeever

Travel + Leisure


MVP development within a short time frame.

There was a need to develop MVP in a short time frame, allowing us to quickly gain helpful feedback and incorporate it into the next iteration of the product.

Extensive database building. 

The complex application required building an extensive database that is quickly and seamlessly accessible for users to educate themselves about oysters and, eventually, all seafood.

An automated rating system for oysters.

Based on the data collected, we needed to develop a rating system for oysters and find a way to best display the information.


In-depth target audience research.

We began with an in-depth discovery and interviewed oyster lovers, farmers, restaurant owners & chefs to ensure iterative releases and user validation throughout the development process. 

Effective technologies applied.

Within the course of work, we used Native Objective-C iOS, the newest Instagram API, WeChat integration, and Mobile Backend-as-a-Service to maximize dev time dedicated to features for users.

An extensive list of features implemented.

We used the latest technologies to introduce an exhaustive list of features, such as taste characteristics, origins, personal health benefits, recommended drink pairings, tap-away reservations, availability notifications, and check-in.


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App launch in eleven major cities across the US.

As the app was launched in eleven major cities across the US, including New York, San Francisco, and Boston, the reports provided an instant way to make regional comparisons and track adoption in real time.

Enhanced user experience.

Web-portal allowed chefs to share daily menus using Facebook and Instagram integrations and OCR technologies, letting customers choose specific oysters and later expand to all seafood menu items in their area.

International debut for the Chinese market.

Soon after launching in the USA, the Pearl App set its sights on the Chinese market using social media tools such as WeChat. The app was localized for Mandarin.

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