Google launches social media platform called Shoelace
Google+ was an Internet-based social network owned and operated by Google, launched in the year 2011. Google+ was launched to take on a popular social media website, Google+ however, was shut down earlier this year due to lack of usage.
Interestingly, Google is now again jumping into the social media bandwagon with its latest hyperlocal social app called Shoelace. It is an invite-only app, being tested out in New York currently however, the developers are planning to expand it to other cities across the United States, but there is no time frame for that. The app is a production of Google's in-house incubator Area 120 and aims to tap the power and intimacy of offline.
The app helps people in finding activities to do and in turn, people with who these activities can be done. It is ideal for people who have recently moved to New York City. It encourages people to do things in real life, as opposed to doing them on their screens. According to the website, the idea of naming Shoelace is to tie people together based on their interests — like two laces of the shoe. Henceforth, the activities listed on the app are fittingly called 'Loops.' The app lets you organize your events as well, and a map interface allows you to view and RSVP to other people's Loops.
Shoelace is oriented toward meeting new people and growing your social circle, unlike most other social media apps. The app allows users to grow their network locally and match users based on their shared interests. Users can then create activities or events and plan a meet-up. This essentially is Google's take on Facebook's popular Event feature. Interestingly, Shoelace will play on the power of personalization. According to the website, Shoelace will mostly be curated by humans and will provide personalized suggestions for activities. Each member will have to be verified before they can join in on an event or community.
As per the Shoelace website, this 'match-making' is based on the interests and pick, and accordingly, the app hooks you up with like-minded people for various activities. For instance, you could use the app to find more people with the same interest as yours, maybe someone to go to the gym with, or someone who likes swimming. Further, regardless of your friends are using Shoelace or not, you will be able to share your interests with them as well.
The app is available on both Google Play Store and App Store (via Test Flight). Since it is invite-only right now, and the app has partnered with select communities. You can request an invite by filling up this Google form. There is also no news on the app going public yet. It would likely depend on the app's performance.
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