Guest Post: Building a Beautiful Business App with Corona

Guest Post: Building a Beautiful Business App with Corona

This post comes courtesy of David Haynes, a Corona developer at Shaw Floors. The app, Floorvana, is available on the iTunes App Store and is currently being featured in a TV commercial airing on the DYI Network and HGTV the week of 4/27-5/03/15. See the video at the bottom of this post. Thanks David!

Back in mid-December, we released a business app written with Corona SDK — Floorvana by Shaw Floors. Floorvana was designed to help a consumer choose the perfect flooring product (or at least narrow the search) by creating a color palette from her own photo(s), then providing options to best match her inspiration.


We just launched the project in a more official way this past week at the Shaw AWESOME convention in Orlando, FL, and it was a massive hit. Shaw has really put a lot of effort into marketing the app, and I think you’ll start to see it pop up a lot more all over the place. Many of the dealers will be placing Floorvana kiosks in their stores too.

When I arrived at our hotel in Orlando, there were Shaw banners everywhere, which made sense, but I was blown away by perhaps the simplest thing — the room key.


That’s our app on the room key! Holy crap!

They also had stand up things like this everywhere:


And it was on displayed (in rotation) on the 4-sided jumbotron in the center of the convention:


It was also featured on tons of swag that was given away, including pens, bracelets, and bags. Everywhere we went at this massive hotel/conference center, there was something that said Floorvana. The keynote presentation that day started out with a performance from Team Iluminate, whom I highly recommend checking out on YouTube. The fact that the app I’ve been developing was talked about during that same keynote is a little bit mind blowing for me.


As the lead developer on the project, I received a good bit of flak for using Corona SDK for a business app because “it’s just for games!” In my mind, though, it was a great way to save time and effort, in order to get the project where it needed to be more quickly. Our design team created a user experience that was easy to use, compelling, and platform-agnostic, so it looked equally at home on iOS or Android.

It also looked pretty great streamed (with an Apple TV) to a 50″ television designed to look like a giant iPhone:


As we developed Floorvana, just like with any software project, we had a few challenges, but we always received help and guidance from the Corona staff and community. The new textfield scaling improvements could not have come at a better time. And Sergey Lerg’s latest config.lua helped correct some visual discrepancies as well, so thanks for that!

I think we’ve proven that with a good design, Corona is more than capable of handling business apps.

View more information, including the commercial for Floorvana (which looks incredible to me, but i’m biased), here:

  • Tom Wilson
    Posted at 06:03h, 30 April


    Awesome app! Downloaded and played with the features. Very professional and a great inspiration for building business apps with Corona.

  • kermit4karate
    Posted at 06:21h, 30 April

    Amazing job. What are people referring to when they say that Corona isn’t good for business apps? It looks good to me.

  • Lerg
    Posted at 09:49h, 30 April

    You are welcome!

  • Michael Weingarden
    Posted at 12:45h, 30 April

    Absolutely beautiful, but not the sort of business app that many of us desire to create with Corona. Business apps have forms with textfields with database backends. Creating forms with text fields on a Windows PC is still highly cumbersome with Corona. We should definitely celebrate beautiful apps. But if Corona wants to earn a reputation for allowing developers to create business apps, it needs to be easier to create forms! imho…

    • Steve J
      Posted at 15:53h, 30 April

      100% agree with this.

  • Dave Haynes
    Posted at 15:57h, 30 April

    Thanks, guys.

    @Lerg, you’re welcome! You, Rob, and the rest of the gang helped a bunch on the forum too.

    • Dave Haynes
      Posted at 15:59h, 30 April

      Er, I meant, you’re awesome. LOL. I just regurgitated exactly what I saw on the screen. 🙂

  • Robin Kinge
    Posted at 05:26h, 01 May

    Very nice. We are including this kind of colourway usage in one of our apps and showing your lovely app has calmed a few people down who said this sort of functionality could not be handled on a ‘phone.


  • Ray Depew
    Posted at 13:33h, 02 May

    I’ve always found that game engines work best for scientific apps like 3D simulation and visualization, reaction kinetics, fluid flow, that sort of thing – I used the Torque engines from Garage Games 10 years ago. I’d never really thought of using them for business apps. What a great idea. With a game engine, most of the hard work has already been done. (Yeah, a forms library might help, but I woudn’t let its absence stand in the way …)