Mobile Ecosystem Development for a Fitness Tech Startup


Motify is a startup with the vision to change how people work out. Motify founders aimed to build a digital fitness ecosystem that would allow people to attend classes led by trainers from all over the world. To create a mobile app for this ecosystem, Motify teamed up with HeyInnovations.

1 mln

downloads on App Store and Google Play

Top 30

workout apps by Women's Health (2020–2022)

$3 mln

raised in seed funding

Business challenge

Motify came to us with a mobile app concept and its UI prototypes. Our task was to build a frontend architecture using those prototypes and hand it over to the client’s backend developers. We were the client’s first choice for the job as we’d worked before, and Motify liked our skills and approach.

In the client’s view, the app would become a digital ecosystem for fitness lovers. Apart from watching workout classes, users would be able to share their results with their friends, follow their trainers, compete for awards, and track nutrition. This way, Motify would help them stay motivated and stick to the training schedule.

Key features

  • Personalized training schedule with video workouts.
  • In-app social network and gamification.
  • A built-in chat with a personal trainer.
  • Fitness and nutrition trackers.
  • Localized interface.

How we tackled the tasks

Set up an algorithm to customize users’ workout libraries

The client wanted the app to show the most suitable workouts for each user. To achieve this, we’ve implemented an onboarding quiz to define users’ preferences. Then, an algorithm would use these preferences to pick courses and add them to the user’s fitness library. Thus, each user would know that these workouts suit their needs and would pay for them more willingly.

The main screen shows workouts and programs relevant to each user

Each program is divided into multiple videos

The workout description includes all the necessary equipment

Used a proxy for changing video quality on the go

Motify’s special request was about the quality of the videos. The team was concerned that users wouldn’t be able to change the video quality on the go. It was possible only with a pause since the system changed the video URL. We couldn’t tackle this problem with standard code libraries and had to think of something else.

Our solution was to use a proxy server on the client’s side. If a user changed the quality from 360p to 1080p, this proxy would request a 1080p video segment from the backend, keeping the video URL on the client’s side the same. Thus, the streaming would continue without a pause, but in 1080p instead of 360p.

Used layered architecture to build a social media platform with gamification

While building Motify, we had to combine different apps into one. Video workouts, social media, health trackers, a chat—each of these features could become an app in itself. Our task was to make sure they’d work together seamlessly. To achieve this, we used layered architecture and an MVVM–router pattern.

At that time, layered architecture together with an MVVM pattern served us well, ensuring app scalability and easy maintenance. In our later projects, we moved to modular architecture.

Mid-level iOS developer at HeyInnovations


A social media platform needed a newsfeed. It’d allow users to get healthy lifestyle ideas from their trainers and see the progress of their peers. That’s why we made a Feed tab in the app, similar to the one on Instagram. A user would see only posts from the trainers and users whom they follow, with likes and comments.

On top of that, we’ve embedded a video and photo editor. This way, users wouldn’t have to use another app to edit their pictures and videos.


A user rating based on fitness activities became an extension of the Motify social media platform. The client’s idea was rewarding users for completing workouts, training at a particular time, or sharing their results in the profile. Our job was to build a leaderboard in a tab close to the feed. Thus, we combined two ways of motivation—social interaction and rewards—in one place.

Built a custom chat with media support and voice calls

The client wanted to help users connect with their personal trainers from anywhere at any time. A simple chat wasn’t enough for this. For example, one of the ideas was to allow a fitness lover to show their trainer how they perform an exercise. For that, we’ve built a custom chat where they could upload videos and images or even call the trainer.

A usual way to embed a chat in an app is to use a code library or a plugin. In our case, we couldn’t do that because simple chats didn’t have the needed functionality. That’s why we decided to develop the chat from scratch, without the help of out-of-the-box solutions. Thus, we made it exactly the way the client wanted it.

Combined two approaches to embed trackers and counters

In-app fitness trackers would make the app a one-stop shop for fitness enthusiasts. Our task was to develop a calorie counter, a water tracker, and a weight tracker. We did this in two ways: first, we’ve built an in-app nutrition tracker, and second, we’ve set up synchronization with other apps. Based on the data, the app suggests calorie intake per meal and calculates the number of calories, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates consumed.

Nutrition tracker

It was important to make adding meals to the app quick and easy. For cases when users had a package of a product at hand, we’ve built in a barcode scanner. Otherwise, they’d be able to find a product or a meal by its name.

Sync with health trackers

We set up synchronization with Apple HealthKit and Google Fit data so that users had all their fitness data in one place. With the sync turned on, the app would get the data automatically.

Connected the app to a third-party service to simplify localization

Motify team’s ambition was to become an international service, so the app needed to have versions in several languages. To achieve this, we’ve integrated the app with Lokalise—a localization and translation management platform. Thanks to this integration, the client’s in-house team would be able to quickly add new languages in the future.

Localized measurements

Apart from language, we had to take into account differences in measurement systems. For example, the Motify team planned to attract users in Australia, where kilojoules are used more often than calories. Thus, we made a version with kilojoules, too.


Motify has been downloaded over 1 million times on Android and iOS. Over 350 trainers have registered on the platform, providing fitness, yoga, meditation, pilates, and stretching classes. After 1.5 years of collaboration, we handed the project over to the in-house team for further development.

1 mln

downloads on App Store and Google Play

Top 30

workout apps by Women's Health (2020–2022)

$3 mln

raised in seed funding

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