What is Formate?
Formate is a web app for organisers and players of football. It's aimed at those who play for fun - Futsal, 5/6-a-side, jumpers for goalposts etc It can also be used by those who want to run small teams and clubs.
In May 2001 we organised for a group of friends to play a game of 5-a-side football for fitness and a bit of fun. Over 100 players, 600 matches and 12 years later we're still playing - and amazingly we've retained the same core of about 5 or 6 of the same friends. Now we think of it more as a club with a history and some great stories.
"He done great to get where he got" Paul Merson
Less work, more play
One of the least satisfying parts of running a club or a team is just getting enough people to play every week. Spreadsheets, emails, text messages have all been employed and worked, but they have not been without their problems - and using them would hardly constitute a fun experience. Playing is (usually!) great fun, so why shouldn't organising be too? There are quite a few web apps out there that promise 'organisation made easy' but they're all quite serious, look and feel a bit like work tools or are a little 'over-engineered' for us; none of them quite did what we wanted, so as web designers and developers we decided to create something that worked for us.
Simple and easy
Formate is built with a focus on 'simple and easy' and the emphasis on a fun experience. That's why we've added 'game elements' and a social part, to encourage participation and a bit of friendly competition between members.
You won't find a glut of features - we've tried to make something that does a few useful things really well. Formate is not ideal for running 'serious' clubs (plenty of apps do that) but it's more for fun football between friends. But even if your team plays in a league (Goals, Power League etc) already you could use Formate to keep a record of your own team and keep the banter for just you and your friends.
A bit about us
We're not a big company with financial backing, we're a small digital design studio and we've bootstrapped Formate as a side project. Although we've been using it to run our own club this is our first release 'into the wild', so it may not be perfect but we're looking to improve it and we do have some ambitious plans - your feedback will be invaluable in helping us shape it in the future.
Beta and free
Oh one more thing, right now it's an early beta release (expect the odd little glitch!) and free to use. We can't promise it always will be free, not least because there are running costs associated with any web app, but we're using this early release to get feedback from you.
We hope you enjoy using it and look forward to hearing from you.
"It's never over until somebody sings" Clayton Blackmore