A Look At Who’s Down From Google
Not content material to only being the ever present supply of data of all types for the standard school scholar, Google is now making an attempt to be the platform that buddies use to plan their subsequent hangout. As 9To5Google reported earlier as we speak, the corporate launched an app referred to as ‘Who’s Down’ on the Apple App Retailer and Google Play Retailer this morning.
Ostensibly a device that permits buddies taken with comparable actions to shortly group and spend time on the occasion, the app is presently invite-solely and is restricted to school college students. It’s value noting, although, that ‘Who’s Down’ doesn’t require customers to enroll with an educational e mail handle on a .edu area, however does ask customers to enter the identify of an establishment earlier than becoming a member of the wait record. Whereas it’s clear that there isn’t a restriction to hitch the app which is sweet for progress, the concentrating on can also be clear. Going after school college students and youngsters with social apps isn’t precisely core to a lot of Google’s enterprise, however it has been doing it with some small social efforts.
We have been capable of be the primary media outlet to get contained in the iOS model of the app, and the design is characteristically Google, nice to make use of and with the corporate’s trademark blue-white design scheme. As soon as you progress a slider that signifies that you’re ‘down’ to satisfy different individuals, the app enables you to enter the identify of an exercise that you’re all for doing, and in addition supplies an inventory of what look like widespread or intelligently guessed alternatives. After choosing I used to be ‘down to hold’, the app ostensibly started ready for different individuals to sign that they have been curious about the identical. As soon as various different individuals point out an curiosity in no matter you have an interest in doing, the app will notify you and slide seamlessly right into a chat room, the place conversations disappear after 24 hours of final exercise.
Whereas Google’s product does include a reasonably slick and properly-designed consumer interface, this idea is just not totally new. Shortnotice, a product launched by one in every of my classmates at Stanford over a yr in the past, has been utilizing an analogous system, permitting customers to manually enter the exercise they have been fascinated with and ready for different customers on the app to precise curiosity. ‘Who’s Down’ can also be very comparable in consumer expertise and design to Free, an app cofounded by Path’s Danny Trinh.
Barring Google’s highly effective autocomplete function getting used to scale back the time it takes to sort in actions of curiosity, Google’s design decisions are hardly novel. With Shortnotice nonetheless struggling to realize customers in what appears to be a troublesome area to enter, it’s arduous to see whether or not or not ‘Who’s Down’ will have the ability to overcome the identical obstacles. Solely time will inform whether or not or not ‘Who’s Down’s nicely-designed consumer interface will make up for a consumer enter system that has been traditionally unsuccessful.
Google is certainly enjoying catch-up in what can solely be referred to as the ‘impromptu occasion initiation’ setting. A number of, albeit smaller, gamers have been getting into this market periodically, however few have caught with customers. The cumbersome nature of typing led Stanford alumni Nikil Viswanathan and Joseph Lau to depend on a restricted set of choices their app Down To Lunch. Pretty profitable throughout school campuses, Down To Lunch is centered on a big button that customers can press to point curiosity in a gaggle exercise.
Whereas on the face of it Google’s product seems to return with an intuitive design and wonderful visible schemes, it’s troublesome to estimate the influence ‘Who’s Down’ could have on customers with out with the ability to use the app. Limiting the product to ask-solely and branding it for school college students will clearly be efficient in gaining market share. It could possibly be that ‘Who’s Down’ may assist pull Google out of what can now solely be referred to as a social product rut.
Disclosure: I’m a scholar at Stanford.