London-based YPlan, a mobile application that helps you find last-minute events taking place either that same day or in the very near future, has now arrived in San Francisco. The company previously expanded to the U.S. by launching in New York last fall, its second major market outside London.
YPlan has also partnered with the Noise Pop music and film festival for its latest move, allowing mobile users to book tickets to the event. The company, which happens to be sponsoring the festival’s closing weekend performances, will be releasing free tickets daily at 11 a.m. PST to encourage San Francisco users to get into the routine of launching the application.
Backed by $13 million in seed through Series A funding, YPlan has been trying to crack into the “social event planner” market, which today is filled with more fragmented players where apps are often focused on helping users find either food or drinks, or just music. YPlan, however, takes a slightly broader focus, with events that extend into the cultural arena, sports, pop-up events and more.
When you first launch the application, YPlan sorts its highly curated selections into “Today,” “Tomorrow,” and “Later” sections, and each event, when tapped, offers photos, a description, ticket prices (if applicable) and a “book it” button.
To date, the company has found significant traction in its hometown of London, where it claims to be installed on one in five smartphones. Combined with its presence in New York, YPlan has seen over half a million downloads, which is notable for an app in this space.
The challenge for companies like YPlan, in addition to being mobile-only – (something that forgets how many office workers today still plan their weekend from their desk) – is making sure that it’s not overlooking events in its curation that would appeal to a good subset of its users. The minute a user has to turn elsewhere to find those must-have tickets, or an event listing that YPlan missed, it could be problematic to get that user to return.
But the company’s growing user base and traction seem to prove that, at least so far, YPlan has been managing to toe the line well – it’s not overwhelming users with options, and not missing so many great events so as to turn users off.
As one co-founder, Rytis Vitkauskas, previously told TechCrunch, “less is more.”
The updated version of YPlan is available for download here (iOS and Android).