In the middle of last year, the creators of Youpendo managed to raise the money they were looking for on Kickstarter, promising to bring to life an app that would « capture and share the little things that matter to you with strangers around the world. »
A year later the application is already available, and it could not have come at a better time, since in the midst of a global pandemic it may be a good idea to test a platform with which to be able to « share thoughts, positivity and emotions » with people who are going through the same thing in other places.
Youpendo is currently only available for iOS, but its creators assure that « soon » it will come to Android, as they are polishing some bugs before releasing it on the Play Store. Artur Zvinchuk, one of the creators, assures that « he tries not to use social networks » and believes that his product differs from the current options:
« After blindly scrolling through my feed, I feel unhappy and empty. There is a lot of pressure, judgment, and social cost to sharing the content with my friends and followers.
This never allowed me to be my true self and share things that matter to me. »
« Send and receive paper planes with strangers from all over the world »
When we first enter, we will see that we have the option to login in two ways: with our Facebook account or with our Apple user. I imagine that they will add more options, facing the launch on Android.
We choose name, we add the profile picture, and we will see some screens that explain some characteristics of Youpendo. For example, they affirm that it has been « created for authenticity », since « to be truly authentic and vulnerable you need someone very close or very distant ».
Having completed this, we will have to let you know our location, in order to « connect with new people throughout the world ». We will then see a series of red planes flying, and a notification invites us to « catch one ».
By doing so, you will fully enter the publication of a stranger. My first meeting is a girl from Serbia, who recommends a book by Paulo Coelho. It feels like an Instagram story, but it comes from a totally unknown person and place. You have the option to like, respond to or see the responses of other users.
There is no option to reply directly with a text message
To do it, you will have to record a video or upload a photo or video (to which you can add text) that you have previously captured. It’s funny, but there is no option to respond directly with a text message, and from this platform we are invited to share multimedia content or that has been recorded at the time.
If we go back to the main screen, we can click on the paper plane to see another message from a stranger, and at the bottom we will find a circular button that allows us to publish a video or an image (remember, you can add text).
It feels like a story from Instagram, Snapchat, etc. but there is no option to add filters. Once sent, it will tell us what has been the first « trip » that our publication has made. As in other social networks we have the opportunity to follow other people, in addition to searching by location or username.
What has caught my attention is that most posts I’ve come across share a positive message, and there are more landscapes than selfies. It is still a little green, and its success (as it usually happens on this type of platform) will come from the number of people who end up using it daily.