2008 was the year of Twitter and Facebook, but which sites will dominate 2009? We've put together a list of the 10 sites we think you won't be able to live without this year.
A major theme in mobile applications now and in the coming months is the ability to detect the location of the user, and to use that information in useful and compelling ways. Loopt fits this bill perhaps better than any other mobile app out there now, mainly because of the way it mixes location awareness with social networking.
Loopt shows you a map, and your position on it, and also the positions of your mobile friends who are in the vicinity. Now you need something to do - somewhere to get together. Loopt detects businesses in the area and makes suggestions based on your interests or specific queries ('beer, pizza, bowling'). You can read what any of your friends have said about prospective meeting places, or read reviews to help you decide.
When you've found an agreeable destination, you can then invite your friends, and access directions for getting there, as can your friends. You can also search out new friends by looking for other Loopt users who have similar interests (favourite bars, say) to yours.
I'm not the first to make this comparison, but Blip.fm really is like Twitter for music. What you see at the site is a scrolling list of people's song choices with their short comments about them. These are called Blips. You can listen to the 'blipped' songs as they come up, or skip up and down the list to songs you like. If you like a particular user (called DJs here), you can give them ‘props' for the songs they play, or you can choose to 'follow' that DJ. After you have found a decent number of DJs to follow, you can switch to a mode where you see only that group's blips.
If you think of a song you want to blip, you just search for it (you can find almost anything), make your selection from the search results, write a little comment about it, hit send, and then your blip is added to the stream of other blips. The site then shows you the other members who have also blipped that artist. It's surprisingly engaging and fun, especially if you find good DJs to follow, or if your own real-world friends sign up and participate.
NEXT PAGE: Power.com and Tweetag
- The sites that will dominate your online activity this year
- Boxee and the Blackberry Application Storefront
- Loopt and Blip.fm
- Power.com and Tweetag
- Hi5 and Tripit
See also: 50 great websites and services for 2009