Aashika the founder of Aqvaleo Software LLP, the makers of novel app Mamma Miya-- for mothers, prior to her first baby, was leading a high-flying life. She traveled to more than 25 countries, had a wonderful time both on the career and personal front by marrying her high school sweetheart.
After marriage, she embraced motherhood. Aashika thought she could manage work and personal life balance, just like she has always been. But, soon realised it wasn't easy.
"As busy moms, we struggled to find time while juggling the different hats we wore - between managing our work, running our home, spending time with our kids, finding enough quality time for our husband, parents, extended family, and friends. And in the middle of all this chaos, trying to chase that elusive idea of “me-time” — left us feeling tired and overwhelmed, far too often. Even recent research shows that just being a mom is the equivalent of 2.5 full-time jobs!," Aashika said to DH.
Later Aashika began speaking with women in her close friends and family network on what different they are doing to find balance in life and found there was no perfect plan.
"I realised they were carving out the time to attend to the thoughts & aspirations of the woman, the mother, the wife, the daughter, the friend, the entrepreneur, the change-maker within. They had let go of the elusive concept of a perfect balance and replaced it with their own sense of rhythm – for each of the hats that they chose to wear."
After gaining her own personal experience and insights from others, Aashika launched the Mamma Miya app in 2018 for expectant mothers and also for working women with children to find balance in life. She later partnered with Namrata to take Mamma Miya app to the next level.
Namrata had previously worked in the US for 10 years before returning to India in 2014. She continued to work full-time and like Aashika, soon realised that she wasn't able to spend quality time with her fast-growing children.
Over time, it was becoming difficult to manage her work schedule and children's school activities. Just when Namrata began to look for support, she stumbled upon the Mamma Miya app and felt connected to its vision.
"Meeting with Aashika felt so right – it was like we were both trying to solve exactly the same problem – for ourselves and for other moms like us. All the synchronicities lining up the way they did, made the leap easier for me. And here I am now – devoting my time to help take Mamma-Miya to all the other moms out there feeling the same way," Namrata said.
Now, Mumma Miya is reaching people globally. "It is a mom-planner that focuses on her well-being - by bringing more mindfulness to her moments, purpose to her days, and intention to her life. We have a deep-seated belief that “fulfilled moms” (not, supermoms) are the foundation of a better tomorrow," company founders said.
"As aspirations of women are soaring with America’s first women VP Elect Kamala Harris and Jill Biden’s recognition of, women who are also mothers, spouses, and wage earners and are struggling to balance all three, Mamma-Miya empathises with this struggle, inspires us to live more intentionally and gives us the tools that help us make it all happen," the company added.
Recently, Mamma Miya was selected for Apple Entrepreneurs Camp. Pune-based Metamagics Computing, the makers of the 'Transplant Care' app was the only other Indian company to make the cut this year.
Besides Apple App Accelerator, the Cupertino-based company hosts Entrepreneurs Camp for up-and-coming app companies led by women and other under-represented groups, to make them improve their product with cutting edge technology to compete with mainstream companies.
Thanks to Covid-19-induced lockdown, Apple Entrepreneur Camp was a virtual one in 2020.
Here are the excerpts of the interview with Mamma-Miya app creators:
DH: How helpful the Apple Entrepreneur Camp was to refine or add new features Mamma Miya app?
Team Mamma Miya: Our app is currently at a very exciting juncture where we are launching globally and so the Apple Entrepreneur Camp was really helpful for us. The camp made us realize what Apple’s idea of “simple” truly means and how we could take a similar approach to our product. Through the design audits, they helped us simplify our current user onboarding and bring the product more in-line with Apple’s Human Interface guidelines.
We were also able to finalize one of our upcoming features both from a conceptual and visual perspective. The Fireside chat sessions for Siri and WidgetKit were insightful and helped us understand how to utilize these Apple technologies to reflect our core philosophy of allowing moms to spend more time in Life and less on their device.
In the words of some of our fellow founders, it was “a great transformation on an already great idea” and a “beautiful and unique take on organisation.” We now look forward to the year-long partnership and on-going support with Apple on the heels of the e-Camp to help us take Mamma-Miya to millions of moms across the world!
DH: What new features we can expect on the Mamma Miya app in the near future?
Team Mamma Miya: We plan to introduce a “WELL-BEING” feature that will help busy mothers make better decisions and more intentional choices on how they spend their limited time and energy.
Using the latest Apple technologies like Siri, Mamma-Miya users will be able to seamlessly transition all the mental clutter from their mind, into their device without needing to open the App. Integration with the new iOS 14 Widget Kit will allow them to live more mindfully by viewing their day’s upcoming plan and make stronger decisions based on their state of mind.
DH: How different was it learn from Apple Experts online compared to interacting face-to-face?
Team Mamma Miya: Despite not being able to benefit from the power that face-to-face interactions bring, the team at Apple really went out of their way to make sure we got the very most from our time at Camp. By turning it into a bespoke program, we had live interactions with the most relevant teams - customised to our App’s most pressing needs.
We even had incredible 1-1 sessions with the core team that popularized the famous ‘Apple product demos’. In fact, when we presented Mamma-Miya at the final session, it was very well received by the other female founders as well as key members of the Apple teams as being ”beautiful and unique”, “authentically presented”, and our “energy just pouring off the screen!”
The mammoth-sized effort involved in accommodating international time zones (from 12 different countries) and still allowing us enough time to dedicate to working on the app was truly commendable. Our partnership managers at Apple India were always available and very helpful in coordinating our whole journey and continue to support us in some critical decisions.
Team Mamma Miya: User privacy is of utmost concern for us at Mamma-Miya. Mamma-Miya allows the user to access a fully functional app without the need for account creation or log in. All the user data is securely stored on the user’s device. In case the user decides to sign up, the data is always encrypted (rest and transit) and stored in the secured cloud storage and can only be accessed by the user herself.