20. August 2012–
Berlin startup Vamos released its event discovery app globally in the iTunes App Store last week. Today, the team are proving the platform works with Eventbrite as well as Facebook and rolling out a special integration with this week's Tech Open Air Berlin.
Vamos is a quick and easy way to browse what's on, right now, nearby. It pulls in events, starting with those listed on Facebook, then adds filters for location and for relevance including how many of a user's Facebook friends are attending. Integration with Google Maps means users are a click away from getting directions, and users can browse shots of an event or venue on Instagram to see if it's a good fit for them.
The idea for the app seeded when Luis-Daniel Alegria, David Prentell and Erik Collinder (above) sat in an Amsterdam kebab shop on a Friday night and wondered what to do next, eventually choosing a random bar that wasn't quite what they'd hoped for.
That led to a hackathon in February in Berlin, drawing in friends, business experts and creatives from around Europe, including Jens Dressler (right), who joined the founding team after the hackathon as Vamos' CTO, Berlin-based designer Linda Gavin, who previously worked on Twitter's branding, and a number of Alegria's former classmates from Sweden's Hyper Island.
"We are finding events today, right here, right now," Alegria told me. "Hotlist, for example, is showing events next week, the week after, in one month and beyond - it's basically doing everything."
Focusing on the near future, in the same city, is not just a useful point of difference from international competitors, it helps keep the number of events listed in the app at a manageable level. The team are working on ways to improve filtering, including by adding a user-nominated shortcut button so that users who most like gallery openings, for example, can zoom straight there.
Next steps – Eventbrite, EyeEm, investment
Users opening up the Vamos app this afternoon will be able to see Tech Open Air as a featured event, including all the satellite events on Friday. "After Tech Open Air, it won't be Eventbrite events all the time, but it proves we can use it," Alegria said. Integration with Berlin's EyeEm is also on the horizon – so is an app for Android.
The focus right now is on building the product and user base but the team are also exploring the best way for the app to make money – featuring events, tailored to users' preferences, is one promising option. Eventually, users may even be able to book and pay for tickets if they need to through the app.
Vamos is so far bootstrapped but is open to bringing on investors.
And for the non-Facebook users?
One of the nice things about Vamos is its inclusivity. The app relies, at least for now, on users owning an iPhone and having a Facebook account but there's an invite option so friends can be invited to events - and that works with Facebook, email or plain old SMS.
"How it would perfectly work, is that you'd send events to your friends all the time," Alegria said. "I think Vamos can become that platform."
FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT:
The backpacker’s Web Guide to Berlin – essential apps and sites to get it right
BMW Guggenheim Lab in Berlin – 10 app ideas to disrupt daily urban life
Skobbler: the Berlin startup helping Barnes & Noble beat Amazon’s Kindle Fire
Monsters, McDonald’s and Miniatures – What inspires Twitter logo designer Linda Gavin