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Vakoms Has Helped to Build the First Global Network for Diabetics


HelpAround - a startup from Israel, developing a unique safety network for diabetics. The platform was supposed to unite patients and their families to get and give help in emergency situations. Also users could count on support with glucose management, carb counting, CGM, insulin, and join various helper communities..


The Client needed to totally rework iOS and Android applications, which at that moment allowed only to sign up, using Facebook account, join different thematic diabetic communities, read and create posts. Besides there was a necessity to refine a website, and support servers. Within the project, a need emerged to develop a separate mobile app which could allow patients to send phone alerts in emergency situations.


Vakoms was chosen among a variety of Eastern European software development companies to refine existing solutions, develop new ones and integrate them into a single medical network. The cooperation between HelpAround and Vakoms started in spring 2013. Initially we were commissioned the following:

Mobile Applications

For this project Vakoms formed a dedicated team consisting of a project manager, 1 Android and 1 iOS engineers, 1 Back End developer, and 1 QA engineer. Later we enlisted 2 more mobile developers, 1 Full Stack specialist, and 2 System Administrators.

Using Objective-C and Swift we expanded the functionality of iOS application. The features below were implemented in the new version of the app:

Initially HelpAround Android application was similar to iOS app, including UI and UX. But later it was given a native Material Design look.

As the next step, Vakoms was involved in the development of a conditional map of helpers. They are users, who may be asked for help in emergency situation by sending private messages. Helpers are displayed on the map within special circles according to their remoteness. Their position is located by smartphone’s GPS, and in case this option is turned off, system uses API.


To ensure that diabetes sufferers will receive help in a critical situation we’ve made a decision to develop a special app called Alert. It allowed patients to send SMS to chosen users of the service with ask for help and a link on Google maps with accurate coordinates.

The Alert application was organically integrated into a diabetics network, allowing sufferers to send a notification from original HelpAround app one by clicking on special Alert button.


The website was developed on Wordpress. Using PHP, HTML, jQuery bootstrap, and other technologies Vakoms’ Full Stack engineer


Vakoms specialists provide full range of support for HelpAround back-end server deployed on Amazon EC2. We do coding on PHP, testing, fixing, and code refactoring.

All project’s data is stored in a cross-platform document-oriented database MongoDB. For quick request processing we use high-speed asynchronous messaging ZMQ system, while Mongrel2, an efficient open-source system is responsible for input queries.

Now Vakoms is to implement a new working scheme for the server. It includes a deployment of Docker Containers technology to bring better flexibility, efficiency and uptime to HelpAround service. To increase the processing speed, as well as improve data security we will create synchronised copies of database within so called Replica Set.

In the mid term outlook the Client intends to deploy a new server on IBM BlueMix cloud platform specially for European users, while Americans continue to be processed on AWS. Equipped with Docker Containers technology both servers will be united into a sole infrastructure.


HelpAround is now well-known network among diabetics from all over the world. It has thousands of active and devoted users in USA, UK, Europe, and Israel. The company has raised over $1 million funding and has been chosen as a member of IBM’s special program for startups - ‘Alpha Zone Accelerator’.

Besides, HelpAround is a proud host of the following diabetes help communities: Costco Diabetes Club, TuDiabetes, EsTuDiabetes, College Diabetes Network, and Children with Diabetes.

Technology Stack

  • JavaScript
  • Objective-C
  • Swift
  • MongoDB
  • Mongrel2
  • Wordpress
  • Twilio
  • JWT
  • Parse REST API
  • Facebook API
  • Mixpanel API
  • Language Detection API
  • Google Maps API
  • Intercom API
  • Twitter API

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