iCrowdNewswire Jan 6, 2021 1:41 PM ET
Recommendation apps are nothing new. Since its inception, Yelp has been the go-to for finding anything from a local business to a neighborhood eatery, and Tripadvisor has been there to help us book hotels and excursions. What offered a solution for our former, pre-pandemic going-out lifestyle was often saturated with paid reviews and sponsored content. This got Morten Veith Schroeder and Markus Straarup rethinking the recommendation space entirely, and over a bowl of Ramen in Chicago, Friendspire was born.
In addition to food and drinks, Friendspire recommends the latest movies, TV shows, books, and podcasts, bridging the gap between the content we consume and the places we go. A user can search within these categories and view organic ratings from others in the Friendspire community. In addition, the app keeps its users, or Friendspirers, up to speed with what’s trending across all content categories so that it’s easy to follow the latest releases and bestsellers. The “Find Now” feature offers a concise search method by narrowing down a selection by categories such as cuisine or streaming service, making it easier and faster for users to discover what they need or expand their watchlist.
But what sticks out as a unique asset to Friendspire is the expansive number of lists within the app. A person looking for the newest shows on Netflix has access to the movies and TV series released that month, as well as niche, thematic lists that focus on an upcoming holiday or specific genre – say best post apocalyptic movies. Friendspirers also have the ability to create their own lists that other users can access and save; and some have fully embraced this functionality, creating dozens of lists for the entire Friendspire community to make use of.
Building a recommendation tool like Friendspire has its place in an always-evolving digital world, but what might come as a surprise is its social element. Logging onto the app, a user will have the option to invite friends or follow existing Friendspirers, and they’ll see others exchanging thoughts and banter over something they liked or disliked. What most people have embraced as the social network archetype in Facebook and Instagram is not true of Friendspire, where its primary focus is finding something new to do outside of the app.
Friendspire joins a new movement in social that is popping up in apps like Clubhouse, an exclusive, invite-only platform where users connect via audio discussions. Where social seemed to hit its brink, apps like Friendspire and Clubhouse challenge that notion by connecting users through the topics they enjoy in a purposeful way. In the past two decades, social media platforms have competed for our complete attention. Friendspire defies that notion by proposing activities outside of the app.
Rather than concocting another social network geared toward the everyday basement gamer, Friendspire founders came up with the idea in lieu of their on-the-go lifestyle. Morten, a former consultant at Boston Consulting Group found that in his constant travels, recommendations on other websites were never as good as the ones he got from friends and acquaintances. Markus, who formerly worked in finance and project management at Novo Nordisk, felt similarly; and the lifelong friends quit their jobs to pursue Friendspire full time.
Now with the pandemic a part of everyday life, convenience has taken precedent in almost every way. Postmates and Instacart have replaced grocery stores, and contactless delivery has become the new normal. All remote work relies on video conferencing services like Zoom and project management tools to communicate and complete everyday workflows. Streaming is up exponentially, and so is the need to find new shows as more people stay home.
As part of this shift in how we use technology, Friendspire aims to bring us the content we crave in a more meaningful way. Where the internet previously acted as a fast-paced money-making machine through paid ads and fake reviews, Friendspire looks to provide more honest insight into the things we love. And people are starting to take notice. According to their social channels, the app just celebrated 200,000 reviews, all of which are user-generated and organic.
With an emphasis on discovering new things, Friendspire ignites thoughtful discussion and a sense of community in a one-stop recommender tool that doesn’t disappoint.