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News  9, Dec 2011

Compath.me, the next Instagram?


We are all social animals. How Facebook came to where they are today is simply attributed to their secret sauce in helping us express our social selves on the web. Of course, there are also various mobile apps that aims to help us share our experiences, and Compath.me is one such app that helps users share experiences that they love. An alumni of Echelon 2011, Compath.me was founded by Hiromichi Ando and his team of 7 and is based in Japan.

Compath.me brands itself as a “compass to guide your life”, hence the app’s name. Essentially the app is a mini combination of Foursquare and Twitter where you could share and discover local experiences with your friends. The app allows you to follow your friends as well as like minded folks and look at what they are sharing. How it works? Snap your experience, share it on the app, and your followers can comment on it. Sounds a lot like Instagram? Pretty much. Compath.me took a step further by allowing users to categorize their feeds into their respective categories of either: Scenery, Restaurant, Cafe, Shopping, Entertainment and others. Other than that, there is also a “To Go” feature which allows you to ‘pin’ or ‘bookmark’ another user’s shared activity onto your “To Go” list so that you could revisit them in the future. Neat. The app is also integrated with Facebook and Twitter which allows you to share it onto the respective social media platform.

While the app has made quite a bit of achievements for itself, and has recently made it into the Le Web 11 Finalist, but really, who isn’t making any photo sharing app right now? Even Facebook has it. From a user’s point of view, there are simply too many photo sharing apps out here. For a single occasion, I could choose to share the moment through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or even my favourite lately, Path (which has a serious kick ass user interface). So the question is, how do you differentiate from all the other apps? What Path did was to limit the sharing to small tight circles of friends and family hence limiting the sharing to only 150 followers, which I personally think is a smart move to ensure only quality content is generated and shared selectively. Another way to differentiate is actually to go vertical, which is to focus on sharing a specific category of experience, food for example. For Compath.me, their differentiating factor is the ability to sort the contents according to their categories as well as the “To Go” feature. However, is this enough to draw users from other photosharing apps such as Instagram? Do download it and let us know your take!

Compath.me was released to the public in conjunction with Le Web 11 and was also voted into Asia’s Top 50 Apps. The team behind Compath.me is also working on the Android version and will be releasing it very soon, so stay tuned with us to be updated!

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Jacky Yap

Jacky Yap

Having spent one year abroad in Shanghai under the NUS Overseas College Programme, Jacky has an avid interest in entrepreneurship and web based startups. Jacky used to run N-House, Singapore's first entrepreneurial themed residence in NUS, and was also part of the organizing team for Startup Weekend Singapore 2012. You can reach him at jacky [at] e27 [dot] co

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