Let me tell you a little something about me. I fucking love beta testing. Yeah, I put the F word in there for emphasis because that’s how much I dig being a guinea pig. (Mom, relax. I’m sure there’s a man in the world that will love a trucker-mouthed redhead like me.)
I will sign up for nearly everything shoved in front of me because number one, I want to have the username “Shelby” before the particular app/site/whatever gets big and number two I find new products fascinating and a reflection of our progress. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?
I’ve signed up early on for a quite a few great things (Remember hearing this noise: “Who’s going to use Twitter? Seriously?!”) and some royally shitty ones that just made my phone slow down and cause me to weave a tapestry of obscenities. (Thanks, Android!) Most recently, I discovered Path, and this is a testament to how much it kicks ass 1,000 ways from Sunday – whatever that means exactly.
Admittedly, I was not one of the first people to give it a whirl, but it’s still relatively new and I belive hitting the tipping point. So why do I love Path? Let me count the top three ways:
1. It’s pretty.
If you have two eyes and Facebook account, there is no doubt you’ve witnessed the transformation of social sharing from copy to imagery. Think about Pinterest. It’s technically still in beta, but it just raised $27mil in Series B fundraising last October. It’s now competing in the top 10 social site rankings. Do you think that’s because investors are dumbasses? Of course they’re not. And don’t even get me started about Flipboard and Instagram. Great design is so hot right now (and I hope it is forever).
In my opinion, we all want to understand our world a little better and visuals are one of the simplest ways to understand what’s around us. I’m sure there’s a study on it, and Born to Learn refers to it – but I’m not going to go ferreting around the internet to find it for you. Sorry love buttons. But think about how we learned as children. Picture books, people. Apps such as Path, with its large images and simple to navigate UI, help us better understand the lives of the people we care about (or don’t care about and want to up our stalking games – did I really just say that? Yeah.)
2. Social integration is a piece of cake.
Foursquare has been a real bitch lately, as have a few other apps I’ve used. Can I please just tweet this run I went on because I know my followers are waiting with bated breath to view my every movement? No, you can’t and you can’t easily figure out how to troubleshoot the problem. I feel like I have a pretty good handle on how to fix issues like this, but that’s because I’ve fiddled with lots of apps and multiple logins. Most of the world probably hasn’t, and if I’m over it in a couple minutes I bet a good chunk of people will give up immediately. Sorry not sorry.
Connecting Path to Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare really couldn’t be easier. If you can turn your phone on, you can connect your accounts. If you don’t know how to turn your phone on, maybe that should be your New Year’s Rez.
3. Multiple sharing options.
Want to share that crazy delicious dinner that just graced your place setting AND check in on Foursquare? Hell yes, you do! What about posting that question that’s been making you look like you’re trying to solve a really hard math problem? Obvi. Sharing the song that so perfectly captures exactly how you’re feeling right now? Of course! And the list is populated from iTunes. Mother EFFING ITUNES, people! Then your friends can listen to it! Right from the app! Come on, that’s rad. Rad I say.
Of course, there are a few bummer things about Path, but seeing how it’s pretty much in its infancy still I’m sure they will make some tweaks. I’d really like to see a connection with Shazam or SoundHound on there. And it would be cool if my friends could play the songs I’ve posted to Facebook on their PCs. I could probably do without the “I’m going to sleep! I just woke up!” feature as well, but it is kind of interesting to see sleep patterns. I guess.
So what are you waiting for? Do you have an iPhone or Android? Download that sucker! And now I’m going to make a few bold predictions here: Path has the potential to beat Gowalla to the game and Path is going to be the next must-have social sharing tool. Boom.
Feel free to follow my Path as well. I promise to make it an interesting journey.