Sonar, today at TechCrunch Disrupt NY, has just announced that it is taking new steps towards creating the perfect “real-time, here-now network.” With this goal comes three new key features, Sonar Status, Sonar Presence and Sonar Messaging, which are all available in today’s update via the App Store.
Building the perfect here-now social network moves far beyond Sonar’s original purpose of solely providing users information about who is nearby. After witnessing what users have done with Sonar, the company says it has identified some real problems that they believe nobody “has yet taken a stab at solving.”
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Clearly, Sonar is aware that it hasn’t found its sweet spot at this point. All in all, the company is aiming to be the easiest way to connect and share with the people nearby — not at all something that will be easily or quickly achieved.
Above: Sonar Status
More, from Sonar:
Sonar Status: like a tweet, but directed at only the people close by. This solves the “who wants to grab drinks/go for a run right now?” problem that no one has really effectively tackled. As a bonus, this status shows up in notifications when you come in proximity to your friends.
Sonar Presence: now Sonar runs quietly in the background, letting you share what you’re up to or interested in with your friends nearby, without checking in or opening the app
Notifications: Sonar will let you know any time someone you actually know and are connected to is nearby (also, if you could tell by my ital, we’re focusing on real connections and friends, relevance is super important; the prospect of a bunch of randoms is not usually too interesting to people)
Messaging: now you can jump into a private chat when you see someone nearby on Sonar, vs. just sending a tweet
What do you think? Does sonar have a chance at dominating as a hyper-local social network? Could its immediacy and emphasis on things and people nearby find a place on your home screen? Let us know in the comments below.