Are you on the lookout for the latest app you won’t be able to put down, the next gadget you’ll be itching to get your hands on, or the slickest new tools to make your workday more productive and your downtime even more fun?
Then look no further than our favorite site for finding the latest and greatest tech products. Each week, we review the crowdsourced links posted to a website called Product Hunt, where tech-savvy users post their best finds and discuss the latest apps and gadgets with a growing community of developers, designers, investors, founders, and tech enthusiasts.
The detween 600 and 800 reportedly use the site, a great testament to its ability to surface products that would otherwise fly under even the best-connected people’s radars.
We took a look at all of the apps, gadgets, and services posted on Product Hunt last week and chose the apps that offer the most fun ways to send messages, communicate with your friends, and connect with new friends. While you can use any old app to send a basic text message or share a photo with friends, these apps offer novel ways to communicate.
Bethere is an Android and iOS app that enables you to check in ahead of time, simplifying the process of letting your friends know where you’re planning to be. With bethere, you can let your friends know where you’ll be and at what time, and get real-time updates on your friends’ activities. To invite a friend to join you, select an activity, tag a friend, and share your plans. Once you arrive at your destination, the app uses a time and location-triggered push notification that can remind you to take a photo to capture the moment.
You can sign in to the app with Facebook, import photos directly from Facebook or Instagram, like others’ “betheres” and photos, and become friends with others in the same vicinity. Bethere cofounder Panos Spyrakis explains on Product Hunt, “Our challenge is to take the check-in concept even further adding true value & introducing social planning as it should be.”
He adds: “We want to offer real value & reward users for actually sharing their location with friends and this is what happens with bethere. Once they start using the app they actually realize they can influence their friends’ schedule offline. And that’s what reminds users to get back in the app and post!”
Convoy is an invisible app that enables you to have anonymous one-on-one text message conversations with a stranger. The app’s creator, Jordan Singer, explains on Product Hunt: “The concept is simple: all through a single number, (442) 242-6686, you can send messages to Convoy and it will start an anonymous conversation with someone else who has also messaged Convoy before. Commands include ‘start convoy’, which starts a conversation with someone else who isn’t currently in another conversation and ‘stop convoy’ for when you’re in a conversation and want to end it.”
Singer explains that when you’re in a conversation, you’re simply sending a message to the Convoy number, and your message gets relayed to the other person via the Convoy number. “Think of it as a single chat window, but you don’t know who the other person is,” he said. “No numbers are disclosed, nothing. You’re just having a conversation through Convoy’s number.”
3. Postpone Pixel
Postpone Pixel is an iOS app that enables you to “send a photo to the future.” Using the app, you can take a photo, enter an email address, set a future date, and send the photo. On the date you’ve specified, the recipient will receive the photo and be able to relive the memory of “good old days.”
Postpone Pixel’s App Store description gives some examples of occasions when you could send photos to yourself or others in the future — such as capturing memories on meaningful anniversaries or to mark progress since the occasion of setting a goal — and explains that you can use the app while you’re offline. (If you’re offline, the photos you’ve taken will be uploaded when you have a data or Wi-Fi connection again.)
Designer Erim Franci writes on Product Hunt of the motivation behind the app: “Pictures command a powerful emotional response when associated with a good time, and nothing motivates us like witnessing progress. The feeling of reliving moments like group photos with loved ones, being out with friends having a good time, watching our children grow, or seeing ourselves get stronger and meeting goals is priceless.”
Wudup, described on Product Hunt as “Tinder meets FaceTime,” is an iOS app that enables you to instantly video chat with people around you. “Tap the start button and connect with people in your area for a quick real-time video conversation,” explains Wudup’s App Store description. “After that, add them to your friends list and continue messaging through the app. It’s a fun and totally authentic way to build your social network.”
Anthony Haid, chief executive of Castle Ventures, the company behind the app, explains to the community at Product Hunt, “By adding search preferences and making the app localized we’re trying to create an experience where the online conversation can lead to an offline connection.”