Hangouts by Yelp, is kind of like the eVite of what I’m doing tonight. It’s not for event planning, just for letting your friends know where they can find you, or perhaps where you may find them. You list all your favorite places and record where you’ll be. It’s currently restricted to the US. So far, I’m kind of liking the idea.
After signing in, it puts me in Los Angeles. That’s nice, since Local Picks dropped me off in Boston. I click the button, “Stayin’ Home.” and it posts the following to my profile:
Ok, so now I want to see what my friends are doing. I click on the Friends tabs… and wait a sec. There’s no friends tab. In fact, I can’t even figure out how to determine what my friends are doing without going to my friends profiles or perhaps reading my mini feed.
These aren’t my friends. I don’t know them. I do have a friend or two with the application installed. I’d rather get updated about their status than some random socialites.
Next, I click on one of the hangout spots, “the grove”. I like this place…
Again… no one I know.
Hangouts is not interesting to me. It’s only about meeting people who might like a place that I like, but doesn’t even clearly indicate if they’re going to be there or just like the hangout. It doesn’t make it easier for me to find out what my friends are up to. It seems that just about the only thing remotely useful it does, is to post a story to my mini feed about where I’ll be going, but for that, I’ll just use my Facebook status message.
Some of my minimum expectations for this sort of app:
- I would expect to see a tab of my friends and where they are going.
- I would expect to see a list of my friends favorite places.
- I would expect to be able to invite my friends to go out tonight.
- I would expect to see a history of where my friends have been lately.