Peer-to-peer learning app development for PhotoWhy


PhotoWhy combines a social network
with a peer-to-peer learning app for photographers.

The mobile application 
enables photographers to share their pictures with the community and easily reach out to some of the world’s top photographers. 
The platform is unique in its emphasis on learning the art of photography

The app is free to download and sign up,
and all social network features are free for all users.

The platform is unique 
in its emphasis on learning the art of photography


Live event

Watch daily live streams where the world's best photographers share their experience and tips on how to compose and take better photos


Get feedback

Receive constructive feedback on their particular shots or full portfolio from a chosen professional



Book a one-on-one mentoring session/masterclass where they can get answers to their most
burning questions or even work with
the best photographers

Peer-to-peer learning app development implies the creation of two separate interfaces.


Amateur`s functionalities :

  • PhotowhyUser Profile
  • PhotowhyUpload Photos
  • PhotowhyPhoto Feed
  • PhotowhyWatch Live Streams
  • PhotowhyChat
  • PhotowhyRequest a picture/portfolio review by a professional
  • PhotowhyBook a masterclass
  • PhotowhyPay for a review or masterclass
  • PhotowhyRate a proffesional photographer after a masterclass

Professional`s functionalities :

  • PhotowhyUser Profile
  • PhotowhyUpload Photos
  • PhotowhyPhoto Feed
  • PhotowhyLive Streaming
  • PhotowhyChat
  • PhotowhyPush notifications of requests for a review or one-on-one session
  • PhotowhyEvaluate a Photo/Portfolio using a variety of teamplates, rate it and write a comment
  • PhotowhySchedule a masterclass
  • PhotowhyWithdraw the earings

Special features


In-app currency is used for convenient transactions between the users

In-app task planner/ 
calendar helps arrange a convenient time for a masterclass

A payment gateway enables amateurs to buy the in-app currency with real money and the professionals – to withdraw real money converted from the in-app currency they earned.

The system suggests content to users based on their preferences

the project

Initially, the client wanted to create a social network where every enthusiast would be able to grow as a photographer by viewing the work of the world’s
leading photographers.

To attract professional photographers to the platform, the company had to offer them incentives. Several features were intended to solve this problem while promoting the future app’s monetization:

  • ・Daily live talks (on a rotation basis) would provide exposure to the photographers and help increase their popularity;
  • ・Instead of likes and comments, amateurs can have their work evaluated by professionals;
  • ・Having to pay for the review and comments makes them more valuable;
  • ・Users can get personalized education from their favorite photographers while the professionals can monetize their expertise via paid lessons.

Thus, a social media platform idea evolved into an educational marketplace of sorts.

The client preferred our company after we convinced him that we have relevant experience and all the skills and processes required to build a peer-to-peer learning marketplace.

Onix’s eLearning app development team joined the project when the client had already developed a list of requirements and the visual design. However, we went on to suggest several major and minor changes to the design and functionality.

The app development team at Onix included:

2 Front-end Developers + Tech Lead
3 Back-end Developers + Tech Lead


Technical Solutions

Onix developed and implemented all app infrastructure using the best modern solutions.

For example, we used CDN delivery from S3 bucket to speed up photos loading.

Onix’s team also foresaw the problem of inappropriate content on the platform. To mitigate this risk, we implemented image recognition at the uploading stage. We have already encountered such problems in the framework of travel app development services. Therefore, we knew how to act correctly.

Tech stack we used in the social network and peer-to-peer learning app develop:

  • Back-end:
    Django REST framework, PostgreSQL, Redis, Celery, Celery beat, AWS S3 buckets, Amazon Rekognition
  • Payments:
    Stripe, Apple in-app purchase API, Google in-app subscriptions
  • Live video streaming:
    Agora SDK
  • Push notifications:
    Firebase Cloud Messaging
  • Front-end:
    React Native, babel-core, babel-runtime, ESLint

Results & Prospects

The initial project estimate was around 4 months. But since features were constantly added, the work lasted for 7 months.

The time spent on the project, including quality assurance, DevOps, etc., has totaled 2,700 hours so far.


The application was launched first in the US, but the client plans to target the global photographers community eventually.

The company has recruited and verified a number of professionals to evaluate and mentor amateurs. Eventually, they will develop a mechanism for amateurs to become professionals on the platform. When a user becomes a popular photographer, they will be able to earn a photographer’s account and become mentors themselves.

Want to develop 
a peer-to-peer learning marketplace app?

Contact us