In 2014, Steve Vangasse created a simple, reliable app that rewarded his kids for managing their time responsibly on their new tablets.

In just two years, more than 1 million parents have downloaded Screen Time. Boasting over 100,000 daily active users, the app leverages email to send its users important alerts regarding their children’s activities including:

  • Which websites and apps their children view or use, and for how long
  • Completion notifications of pre-defined tasks such as chores or homework assignments which earn the child more screen time
  • New application download requests and alerts when kids reach their daily limit of screen time

“Email is such a cool part of our product and adds a lot of value,” says Steve. “Screen Time sends lots of transactional email for parents and is dependent on the customer engagement, loyalty, and retention that email provides.”

Launching a Successful App with Google Cloud Platform

Steve evaluated a number of cloud-based app platforms. Screen Time Labs turned to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) for its infrastructure needs because it offered a free plan, was easy to integrate, and was proven to scale. According to Steve, “GCP takes away the worry and hassle of having to scale and manage your infrastructure. You simply deploy your service and GCP takes care of scale.”

Screen Time initially sent email through Google App Engine, which Google Cloud Platform customers can leverage to send a limited amount of email. As Screen Time grew, they knew they needed a powerful email tool to continue to send valuable user communications.

“We had to find a solution to send more email, and we had to find it quickly,” says Steve.

Scaling an Email Program with SendGrid

Google Cloud Platform (GCP) support recommended that Screen Time Labs turn to SendGrid to ensure the scale of its email infrastructure, including easy-to-manage volume upgrades. “With SendGrid, I have the confidence that email is always up, always delivered. If you hit a monthly quota, you’re not cut off,” says Steve.

Screen Time Labs now enjoys robust analytics available with SendGrid’ transactional email integration that Steve and his team wouldn’t have with their own in house email program. “It’s interesting to see how click through rate or volume changes for each audience as we make changes to UI/UX,” Steve says.

By sending email that customers value and using SendGrid’s powerful analytics to test and improve its campaigns, Screen Time is achieving strong delivery and engagement rates such as:

  • 99.72% Delivery
  • 42.1% Open
  • 2.67% Unsubscribe

The Bottom Line

According to Steve, ”Google Cloud Platform and SendGrid together have helped us scale our transactional email throughput as our business grows. We don’t need to worry about the headache of shifting to another platform, taking developer time to migrate, renegotiating a pricing plan, and getting used to using a new platform. I have peace of mind with the knowledge that both SendGrid and GCP can scale with us.”

SendGrid and GCP are a perfect match for Screen Time Labs’ transactional email program because they are scalable, reliable, and easy to integrate.

To learn more, download the PDF of the Screen Time Labs case study: Using Google Cloud Platform & SendGrid to Keep Up With Success.



Jessy Sweet
Jessy Sweet is a Product Marketing intern at SendGrid and an Information Systems/CS student at the University of Colorado. When she's not scouring the streets of Denver for the next great fish n chips experience, you can find Jessy in the drawing studio or enjoying the great outdoors.