Social media has always been a great way to make new friends, find, a job, or simply keep in touch with people you may not see often. But now social media is going “visual” with the launch of the Color application for the Google Android and Apple iPod phones.
Instead of adding Friends or Followers, you can use the application to create a public photo album. Anyone in the vicinity of you has access to your photos and can add them to their own photo album. You can view who has added your photos or commented on them and then send them a message if you’d so choose.
You’re probably thinking, “Why would anyone want to share their private, personal photos with complete strangers?” But the idea behind it is pretty innovative — say you’re at a concert sitting in the last row. You may be having fun with friends, but the pictures you take will look nothing like the pictures from people in the first row. So, why not add theirs to your photo album? Also, you may have missed a funny moment, or forgotten to take a picture when you saw a Lady Gaga fan wearing something outrageous to her concert. You can use the app to see if someone else caught it on camera and then add their photo to your collection.
Although you can’t choose your own network, the app determines an “elastic network” for you by figuring out whom you hang out with on a regular basis. If you hang out with someone frequently, the app ranks the friendship higher. If you interact with the person on the app, that helps to rank the friendship higher, as well. However, if you stop interacting with the person through the app or don’t hang out with them as much, their photos begin to lose their color until they totally disappear from your network. This is a pretty neat feature because it basically acts as a notifier to tell you that you’re losing touch with a friend.
Also, the application has tremendous marketing potential. Say your company is at the aforementioned concert—the person who takes the best photo using the application could win a free t-shirt, or you can advertise taking a photo with a company t-shirt on to get 10% off a purchase at your vendor’s booth. The possibilities are endless—even something as simple as taking your own company photos at the concert will quickly spread to anyone within 100 feet of you and provide quick, cheap advertising.
Upon its launch, which was March 24, 2011, a few glitches were pointed out, like slow speed and inability to view photos. However, the company has made numerous updates to fix the problems and has already made an upgraded version. And with $41 million in funding, and Bill Nguyen (founder of Lala), D.J. Patil (former Linkedin Chief Scientist), and Peter Pham (Vice President of business development at Photobucket) on board as its founders, the company is sure to know the key to making the app a success.
So if you’re looking for a creative way to social network that works more in tune with how the mind actually works, rather than how a computer thinks the mind should work, Color is definitely a great application to check out!