Cannes Lions

The Civil War Today iPad App

BOTTLE ROCKET, Dallas / A & E TELEVISION NETWORKS / 2016

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Overview

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Overview

Description

The Civil War Today app immerses students, history buffs, and educators of varying levels of interest and knowledge in the real history of The American Civil War. Users are transported back in time and experience the news of the day as if it were happening in real time. To meet the needs of such a wide-ranging audience, The Civil War Today app customized navigation that fits each individual’s preferences and overall time commitment.

The design allows users to drop in on major events very quickly through specific date selection and featured top dates — getting up to speed on some of the war’s most well-known and significant moments. Civil War fans can also absorb the lesser-known, but equally compelling events via a four-year timeline that will take the user daily articles, letters, videos, and more.

Execution

Rather than create a typical event app that would quickly fizzle out, this was the perfect opportunity to develop an experience that would bring the Civil War to life in present day and continue to be a learning tool for years to come. The app created a way for users to live the events in real time through four years of daily updates.

The app also gamifies the experience to prompt daily check-ins from users. GameCenter integration earns users Civil War-era inspired achievements and displays them in a virtual medal case. The Civil War Today is not just an informative tool for American history buffs. Teachers across the country are using the app to teach the Civil War, engaging an entire generation in fun and innovative ways. Because of its wide application, The Civil War Today reinforced both A+E and History Channel’s brands as the leaders in out-of-the-ordinary educational programming.

Outcome

Over the past four years, the Civil War Today app has not only revisited history but has made history itself. This app has gone down in App Store lore as the gold standard for how tablets can render conventional textbooks irrelevant by illuminating our shared heritage in new and unprecedented way. Now, students, history buffs, and everyone in between can use the Civil War Today app as a mobile resource and interactive experience for years to come.

Other notable honors:

-Apple Hall of Fame Winner

-Featured in 85 Places in the App Store, including App of the Week and iPad Essentials

-Rated #1 grossing and downloaded entertainment app in the App Store

-Rated #6 grossing and #8 downloaded overall in the App Store

-Featured on “The Daily Beast” and Macworld

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