Independence Blue Cross gears up to launch apps

By: Chris Gullo | Jan 4, 2012        

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konyPhiladelphia-based insurer Independence Blue Cross (IBC) will release multiple mobile applications using Kony’s middleware development platform, called KonyOne. The platform enables developers to create scalable apps that work across a number of devices and operating systems.

Kony’s Write Once, Run Everywhere technology churns out apps that natively run on various operating systems, including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Java ME, Symbian, webOS. It works via mobile sites, too, of course. Kony says the platform enables apps to run on more than 9,000 different types of smartphones, tablets, kiosks and computer devices.

IBC plans to develop both simple web-based information resources and “more complex native applications”. IBC already offers a mobile site called IBX that helps members find doctors, verify referrals, compare the prices of medications, track spending, view health history, and apply for a temporary ID card. The insurer offers HMO, PPO, Medicare, and Medicaid plans that cover 3.2 million members and processes some 22 million claims each year.

“The Kony Platform lets us create mobile web applications as well as native apps and provides us with a standardized platform across all of our business units,” stated Michael Yetter, director of eBusiness at IBC, in a press release.

This isn’t Independence Blue Cross’ first move into mobile health. The insurer recently partnered with Healthrageous in November. Healthrageous, which spun out of Partners Healthcare’s Center for Connected Health in 2010, offers a wellness platform that uses wireless-enabled fitness devices and apps to power team challenges among employee populations. At the time of that announcement, Yetter said that IBC was looking into developing health apps that encourage health eating and exercise.

“Healthcare enterprises have many mobile app technologies to choose from,” stated Yetter. “We chose the Kony Platform because it clearly demonstrated that we could get to market quicker, reach the broadest range of smart devices, and lower our overall development and maintenance costs. Kony also allows us to reach a wider audience and meet the consumer on their mobile platform of choice — we will no longer have to worry about operating system upgrades or new devices on the market.”

Read the press release below.

PRESS RELEASE – Kony Solutions, the leading mobile application platform provider, today announced that Independence Blue Cross (IBC), southeastern Pennsylvania’s largest health insurer, has selected Kony Solutions as its mobile application platform. Kony’s Platform Write Once, Run Everywhere technology enables mobile deployment across more than 9,000 mobile smartphones/tablets/kiosks and operating systems, allowing IBC to develop robust mobile solutions for members, providers, and business partners regardless of what type of device they use.

“Health care enterprises have many mobile app technologies to choose from,” says Michael Yetter, director of eBusiness at IBC. “We chose the Kony Platform because it clearly demonstrated that we could get to market quicker, reach the broadest range of smart devices, and lower our overall development and maintenance costs. Kony also allows us to reach a wider audience and meet the consumer on their mobile platform of choice – we will no longer have to worry about operating system upgrades or new devices on the market.”

IBC developers will soon begin training on the Kony Studio, a proprietary Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for the rapid development and deployment of mobile applications. The plan is to begin roll-out of multiple applications as soon as possible. Applications will range from simple mobile web “informational” apps for members, to more complex native applications. “The Kony Platform lets us create mobile web applications as well as native apps and provides us with a standardized platform across all of our business units,” says Yetter.

“We’re pleased to work with a company as forward-thinking as IBC,” says Aaron Kaufman, general manager and vice president of Kony’s Healthcare and Life Sciences division. “Our platform will enable IBC to bring its clients a rich mobile experience, additional functionality, ease-of-use and access to some of its most important services. We’re gratified that IBC has joined a growing number of providers and payers choosing the Kony Solutions, validating our leadership position in the mobile healthcare market.”

KonyOne is the only platform that enables a single application definition to deliver both native applications and mobile web (HTML5 and non-HTML5) across phones, tablets, kiosks and desktops. Offering true native support for all seven operating systems (including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Java ME, Symbian, webOS) along with simultaneous support for the mobile web, the KonyOne platform provides a secure, scalable and extensible mobile middleware runtime platform that can be seamlessly integrated with existing services.

About Kony Solutions

Kony enables companies to provide innovative mobile solutions on every mobile device. Leveraging the KonyOne Platform, an application is defined just once, and deployed across more than 9,000 devices, 7 operating systems and multiple channels, including native, HTML5 and mobile web, hybrid, social media, SMS/MMS, kiosks, desktop and tablet applications. KonyOne provides a universal framework that ensures the best user experience by optimizing all native capabilities for each device operating system and browser. Given the market’s rapid rate of device and platform upgrades, Kony future proofs applications against OS and browser updates, providing SLAs guaranteeing timely support of the newest operating systems and devices. Leading brands have built business‐to‐consumer (B2C) and business-to‐ employee (B2E) applications with KonyOne, including Hotwire, Huntington Bank, Hyatt, Toyota and Capital One.

In 2011 Kony was positioned as a “Visionary” in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Mobile Consumer Application Platforms (MCAP) report. Kony has been named a Gartner Cool Vendor, a “Most Innovative Company of the Year” by the American Business Awards and was chosen as one of Fast Company’s 100 innovative Apple-affiliated achievers.

Please visit www.kony.com for more information or to download a whitepaper on how to frame your mobile strategy. Connect with Kony on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.