Revolutionary new model or just another photo app: Is Color overhyped?


Its been a month now since the release of Color. During its launch it got a fair bit of attention – we saw the inter-webs blow up with confusion about the photograph-sharing app, and with a logo that looks like the Mac death-wheel, you couldn’t miss it in the app store.

The app combines many concepts in one package but at its heart, it’s basically a photo sharing tool. Instagram you say? Not quite. Color allows you to share photos from within the app itself with people that are in your immediate vicinity – no need to post to Facebook or Flickr. Think Foursquare meets Instagram meets real-time crowdsourcing.

The app uses GPS and sophisticated light and ambient noise measurements to locate you and collate any photos you’re taking into what is essentially a photo album, populated by you and anyone else who is also taking photos or video in your near vicinity. Instant connection with the people around you.

The proximity based cornerstone that Color sits on creates a temporary social network with people that are around you, right there and then – playing right along with this year’s big trend of real-time interactivity.

The other point of difference is Color’s Elastic network. Unlike other social media platforms where you create your own network of friends by adding, following, or importing new people, Color builds your network for you. If the app recognises that you’re regularly in the same physical vicinity as another Color user, it will add that person to your friend-base.

Friend lists based on real-life interaction? Sounds a bit scandalous.

There’s an obvious privacy issue with Color. Anyone who has the app open near you can join your photostream and see your photos, which at this moment hasn’t resulted in anything news worthy. It’s only a matter of time though until Color hits the the headlines with an “Oh my god, is that paris hilton taking naked photos of herself?” story.

The app has gone through it’s first update to make it’s user experience more simple. It also partnered up with 20th century Fox for their premier of “Water for Elephants”. The goal being to show the true potential of what Color can do and, judging from the results, it’s quite impressive.

There are a couple of key cool things about this app but does it really deserve the hype it’s received over the past month?

Yes and no.  The $41 million dollars worth of funding, and all-star team received a lot of attention early on in the release but very little was said about the actual app. It felt a little like the potential of what that team could create with all that money was more exciting than Color itself. I do think this app has substance and to me, its true value lies in its opportunity to bridge the offline and online world. Something many social networks out there have struggled to do.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on Color, do you see it having the legs to grow into a premier social networking platform ?

Editor in Chief at here SMNZ, I have a passion for social and digital media. When not writing and managing SMNZ I am the Head of Innovation at TAG The Agency, a digital ad agency and the Head of Sales and Marketing for End-Game, a software development agency. I'm also involved with a number of startups and I am always keen to support those that are bold enough to give things a go. Start something, better to try than to live wondering what if...

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