How many friends do you have?
I’m not asking about “followers.” I’m not asking about acquaintances. I’m not asking about people you’ve never met before but have a cool profile picture. I’m asking about real friends.
Path is about those relationships.
Path is a Different Kind of Social Network
About a year and a half ago, former Facebook developer Dave Morin started a new social network. Unlike Facebook, Twitter, and now Google+ — sites where there is a strong undertone of a high school popularity contest (the more people who like you, the cooler you are) — Morin’s Path is about intimate connections with a few close friends.
Path 2 Adds Features
The Path app was originally launched exclusively on the iPhone, though an Android version came out soon after. In the first iteration of this smartphone-based social network, users interacted with their path via pictures only. Path 2 adds many more options for interaction. The original picture-based functionality is still there, but you can now share:
- Who you are with (with or without a picture)
- Where you are (with or without a picture)
- Music (samples) from iTunes
- Sleep/Awake status
The new Path can also track your location automatically and will update to your Path when are in a new city or neighborhood. Moving beyond simple picture sharing, Path has become a “Smart Journal” to let your close friends know what you’re up to. You can also post updates to Facebook, FourSquare, and Twitter directly through the Path app. (Click here for more details)
The Intimacy Forgoes the Creepy
I don’t feel comfortable adding all this personal information to the mass social media sites like Facebook or Twitter. Sharing my personal ins and outs with anyone who stumbles upon my profile is too public for me.
But with Path, you are sharing your life with only your close friends. Path fosters relationships by allowing you to know what your close friends are doing and let them know what you’re doing.
Will The Path Model Work?
The intimate social network is a great idea, but though it is Path’s unique selling proposition, it may also be it’s biggest hurdle. Without a limit (or with an arbitrarily large limit) of friends or followers on the mass social media sites, it’s easier for the message about the network to spread. With Path being limited to 150 friends (formerly 50), I expect that Path will always be a smaller network than the others.
And how will Path make money?
What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below.