Pregnancy apps are commonplace these days, but the Doula app makes a claim for being ‘the number one labour coach’ for pregnant women
Initially the app was launched in the Netherlands at the beginning of 2014, for iPhone users. Many pregnancy apps are designed to help expectant mothers to get through their contractions, and the Doula app includes a playlist of soothing music, a contraction timer with a graph and a breathing assistance button. The new multilingual app is now available on Android and features five extra languages: English, Spanish, Moroccan, Turkish and German.
The Doula labour coach
The Doula app guides women and their partners through the initial hours of childbirth. At this early stage, Doula claims, heavily pregnant women are often left alone by midwives because ‘the baby isn’t on its way yet’ – Doula believes pregnancy apps could help support mothers during this time. In certain situations women may have to manage their contractions without professional guidance, for hours on end – creating a gap in the market for pregnancy apps like Doula. The developers believe that in situations like this, many users of pregnancy apps feel reassured and more relaxed to have the voice of an experienced midwife by their side.
The app became popular in the Netherlands very quickly after its launch in 2014. Pregnancy apps should not replace healthcare professionals, however. The developers say that many midwives, gynecologists and antenatal course leaders recommend are already recommending using the app as a complementary support.
The developers say that discussions are under way with partners and they aim to add even more languages to the app in the future. These discussions are focusing on expanding the app to cover Russia and Asia, as global markets for pregnancy apps become ever more competitive.
The Doula app is free and is now available on Apple and Android devices. The app was developed by DTT Multimedia, which has previously worked on apps for clients like ING Bank, FOX Sports, Boston Consultancy Group, KPMG and the Dutch government.