The rise of location-based apps has been so rapid that there are a slew of products coming onto the app stores most of the time. But few have gone to the trouble of realising that by targeting a passionate user base in one area they may get some head-room over the competition. Hey, it works in the Valley, why not elsewhere?
That’s the been strategy of young London-based startup Area Now, which bills itself as a ‘short-notice event recommendation service’ for nearby events. Their iPhone app now in Beta (combined with the site), effectively crowd-sources events from people nearby who want to find out where the latest happening club or event is. You can download the app from iTunes here or start adding events direct on the site.
Area Now displays all music events in a locality around you, which lets you “Likemark” an event and build up a diary of things to do. Your friends’ Likemarks then become the way to tell you what’s really hot around you. The app which can pinpoint the location of the event on a Google map.
The concept might be a stretch for some. Foursquare is great for this of course – but it focuses on people not events.
We’re hearing the app is turning into a something of an underground phenomenon in Shoreditch – a part of London which has become synonymous with the London music scene. The traction is due in part to their guerilla marketing tactics on the streets, including fly-posting and big club events. These guys know how to throw a party and get people into their app.
The app was developed by music and club culture aficionados Christian “Candid“ Dvorak of indie label Klein Records, Dr Babsi Lippe and CTO Claudia Kogler – all emigres from Austria, attracted by the London tech and music scene. Once again, London is proving itself to be the melting pot of Europe for tech startups.
We went to interview them about the app at their office near “Silicon Roundabout”, in our series of videos we’re calling The Roundabout Tapes.