Imagen | Groopify
Hands up if you have ever tried to organize a get-together that, in the end, never took place. A dinner with friends, a birthday party, a football match, a business meeting or a simple coffee to catch up with an old friend. You know what I mean, the kind of “would be great to see you” coffee, the “some time soon” catch-up, that nine times out of 10 ends up being filed in the folder marked: forgotten plans.
We don’t know whether the chicken or the egg came first: if we were all busy all the time before mobiles allowed us to be in constant contact with each other. Or is it the very fact that we are always in contact, organizing everything online and forever postponing the offline, that makes us so busy? Time management, both personal and between groups, is one of the most catered-to areas in the app market. Developers know the smartphone has replaced the agenda, that the endless WhatsApp groups designed to arrange meetings are a recipe for nothing but headaches and frustration, and that if we are going to organize all of our meetings on a screen, it makes sense to do so using an interface designed for that very purpose.
Today we are going to look at three of these apps.
Meetsapp was born after a proposed game of football between friends ended up taking a lifetime to organize : between the sprawling WhatsApp and Gmail threads it proved impossible to get everybody together in one place at one time, and technology didn’t exist to overcome the problem. With this in mind, the founders – who had previously enjoyed success with the launch of Singit!, an application that displays song lyrics – created a tool that would organize everything, an intermediate point between messaging (the attendees can comment before, during and after the meetup), and events (like those organized on Facebook with information about the time, date and reason for the event), in order to make a plan and take care of all the little things that crop up when you make a plan.
Want an example? How about a map that features your friends locations or a space designated for photos in order to group them all together (and avoid the whole “I’ll send them over to you later” which, despite one’s best intentions, often ends up being never). The app syncs with your telephone contacts and is available for iOS and Android.
You spend too much time looking at your screen making plans and too little time in the street or in a bar enjoying those plans. This is the long and short of things and the problem that Mozi looks to solve. Mozi is an application designed to “bring people together”. It focuses on the “when”, so users attending an event are given several options for dates and times. The app then computes all the information and selects a time and date when everyone will be available.
The Mozi team consists of five twentysomethings working from various spots around the globe (Europe, Asia and North America, as they explained on Reddit at the launch of their beta). As with Meetsapp the application synchronizes with your telephone contacts and is available for iOS and Android.
Groopify brings people together, but in a different way than the other two applications discussed in this article: if meetsapp and Mozi seek to organize meetups between friends, Groopify is the app itself that decides the plan, the place and even the people. Developed in Spain and available in several cities (Granada, Malaga, Salamanca, Seville, Valencia and Zaragoza), the idea is you register, reserve a place on one of the plans that the app suggests, pay the first round of fees and go the place where – and here comes the interesting part – you will meet the other people who are going to do the activity with you.
How do they decide who you are going to meet? In order to register you need to have a Facebook account, once they have access to your account the team tries to unite people with similar interests. The app doesn’t go so far as to seek to organize your stressful life, only to make it more interesting and to help you to find new places and people in a city.