Senior Engineer at Haven
A film and TV show streaming availability finder, available on web, iOS and Android.
Cinepicks was something I’d used to keep busy during COVID lockdown back in 2020. I’d used React Native a little by then, but wanted to push the boat out and make something a little more than just a simple mobile app. I spent a lot of time developing and refining Cinepicks during that initial 6 months, and enjoyed every minute of it.
The Cinepicks mobile app (and then later the slimmed down version on the web) allows users to browse almost every TV show and movie on the IMDb list, and tell you what (if any) streaming service you can watch them on, including Netflix, Prime Video, Apple TV, BBC iPlayer, and more. It has a browse and filter feature, allowing users to refine their results by release date, IMDb rating etc, and also search for titles manually using the search feature.
What makes it different from some other applications is that Cinepicks shows the user everything, even if it’s not on a streaming platform at all, and tell users if and when each show is coming to a streaming platform in the future.
This is achieved by not just having the app retrieve data from a third party API (which would be pretty boring and easy), but instead collating data on my server and storing it in such a way that allows it to be merged with other data points, and heavily cached with temporary Postgres entries, and Redis caching.
There’s also other features which I added after V1 release that allowed me to learn great skills in WebSockets with React Native. Specifically the feature where two users could browse a list of titles in a Tinder style way, swiping left or right on shows they want to watch, and the app would then show the users the films they both said yes too.