The brainchild of founder, chief executive and working parent, Simon Bishop, The Hug App was launched last week on the iOS App Store, which loads just fine, and also the Google Play store, although for me the Google Play version seems temporarily offline, stating it is "unavailable in your country".
As I am in Las Vegas for a conference, I switched the VPN on and set it to Australia, but I'm still getting the same message, so I'm not sure whether it's just my location or a temporary issue, but given the app's creator "resolved to find a solution to the struggles parents face when juggling employment or daily commitments", the Android version will be there soon, if it isn't already.
We're also told that the app aims "to solve the age-old problem for parents looking to source appropriate assistance with regard to transport and care for their dependents when tied up with other commitments".
“With so much going on in parents’ lives, no matter what their status, most parents have relied on frziends and family to pick up their children at some point,” added Bishop.
Now, to make the process of development as seamless as possible, Bishop partnered with Aussie app developer, DreamWalk, to deliver The Hug App, naturally touted as an "efficient, safe and secure platform for the modern parent".
Bishop made his move across the board to a winning position, and said: “The Hug App uses GPS location sharing services, which gives parents the peace of mind of knowing where their child is at all times, while in the care of family and friends.
“I see a significant market opportunity for The Hug App both here in Australia and around the world."
So, why should this be so significant?
Well, Bishop said that "despite countless ride sharing and babysitting platforms and services available to parents, The Hug App better serves those parents for two important reasons".
"It leverages a parent’s own private and trusted network, rather than outsourcing to unknown third parties, and is transactional by nature, as opposed to simply connecting two parties together via yet another messaging app, increasing efficiency and ultimately saving time and reducing stress."
For Bishop, an experienced entrepreneur, working with a capable, Australian-based developer was vital to The Hug App’s success.
Founder and creative director of DreamWalk, Joseph Russell, said: “When Simon approached us with his vision for the Hug App, we got it and saw a lot of value we could add around product strategy and design.
“We like to work with ambitious entrepreneurs and on projects we believe in. Simon's idea was innovative, he had a patent pending and he wanted to change people's lives for the better. This ticked all the boxes for us.”
So, there you go. Hug it out now via the app and may you too finally solve your family issues transport and childcare – once and for all!