I happened onto a new app (well – new to me) the other day – through an ad on Facebook. It’s called Yonder – and it looked like something that might interest me (and – since it was free – I figured it couldn’t hurt to check it out).
The best way to describe the app is to say it’s like a Pinterest for outdoor sports enthusiasts – which makes it a lot more manly than Pinterest. Don’t be offended by my “manly” comment. Yes – Yonder is used by women as much as men. My point is that Pinterest is just more geared towards women. Yonder is geared towards anyone who likes the outdoors and wants to share his/her experiences with others.
I’m using this app on my iPhone 4S. As far as I can tell, it’s not available for Android.
The minimalist design of the app makes it pretty easy to use. There’s a big red camera button placed in the bottom center of the screen. Most anyone can figure out that you touch that button to take a photo. Once you touch it, you have a number of choices:
- Take a photo immediately (which can be in either your forward or rear camera)
- Switch to video mode (yep – you can upload video)
- Choose from your photo stream.
Once you have your photo, you can choose from 6 different photo filter effects (think Instagram). Simply choose your effect and hit the checkmark to approve your final photo. Then, you can locate where the photo was taken – either right where you are (through the handy-dandy GPS feature) – or – if you’re using a photo you took another time, simply move the map to the location and confirm the location. Upon confirmation, the app automatically uploads the photo and location. Easy!
The only thing that I think could be incorporated better is the “Experience Tagging” of the photo. On both photos, I uploaded without tagging “Biking” as the experience. That’ll matter as you read below in the Search Yonder section. I think the app should go to an Experiences page right after the Map page – to remind you to tag the experience. Otherwise, you need to remember to hit the “Experiences” tab at the bottom of the photo before uploading. Obviously, I don’t remember to hit that tab until it’s too late.
There’s also a “List” tab at the bottom that I haven’t used yet. No clear explanation of this that I can find. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to run you through a List Page, too before uploading (but, then again, that might make too many page views to do and make the app less user-friendly).
I’ve uploaded two photos so far – but haven’t got any likes or comments. Maybe the photos aren’t too inspiring. Maybe likes and comments come when you connect with others on the app (which I haven’t yet done). Hopefully, the interaction will come as more people discover the app.
Obviously, I’ll use this mostly for cycling (and occasional runs). As I said earlier, though, the app is designed for the outdoor enthusiast. In fact, the Experiences that you can tag are as follows:
- Horseback Riding
- Outdoor Event
- Rock Climbing
- Trail Running
- Wildlife Viewing
- Yonder Scenery
So, there’s plenty from which to choose – and I’m sure they’ll consider adding some others as folks use the app for more uses.
The fun part of the Yonder app is the ability to search out photos. The app itself determines your location through GPS. Then, you have the ability to search for photos based on either Popular or Nearest to your location.
There’s a Search by “Following” – which probably comes in handy when you end up following others who post photos. Right now, when I try to search by “Following,” it tells me that “there are currently no experiences captured at this location. Be the first to record an experience.” Guess I’ll wait until I’m following some folks to try this again.
As for the other two searches, I really like the “Nearest” search – as it may help you find someplace nearby that you haven’t explored. Once you hit the search, there’s a choice to view the search by:
- Map (which lets you see pins in locations on the map with relation to where you are)
- Full (which lets you see screen-sized photos that you scroll down to see each one)
- Gallery (which puts the photos in a 3 wide x however tall grid so that you can see more all at once).
Note that the map in the “Popular” search isn’t too useful if you are in an area where there’s nothing popular at the time….
Oh – I don’t think I mentioned this – but you can also filter your search to find only those experiences which you want to see. I filtered by biking (go figure). If you remember above, I mentioned that I forgot to tag my photos as a Biking Experience. This is the reason it’s so important to do so. Otherwise, the photo could get lost in the – dare I say – Great Dark Yonder (insert groans here).
I haven’t really figured out how to go back into my posted photo to add the tag after the fact. So, I just deleted the photo and re-added it. There’s probably an easier way to do it – just haven’t figured it out yet. It’s weird – but – even when I resubmitted my photo with the Experience tagged, my profile still shows only 1 Experience….. Hmmmmm….maybe it’s just a glitch – but, gosh darn it, I want to show 2 experiences to match my 2 uploaded photos.
Even weirder yet – my most current photo that I remove is removed for a moment – only to come back and haunt me again. It leaves when I’m looking at my Profile in “full” mode; however, it comes back when I switch to Gallery Mode.
I’m going to have fun as I continue to explore this app. I’m not sure how much I’ll use it during a ride – because it would mean switching from my MapMyRide app – and that’s just a pain in the chamois. Of course, if I don’t do that, I won’t get any good photos!
MapMyRide allows you to take photos, but the photos are lost somewhere in the app after you do it – and the photos are more of an afterthought. The Yonder app puts the photos front and center (but there is no GPS tracking of your ride).
Maybe the MapMyRide folks and the Yonder folks should get together and give us the best of both worlds!
Want to give the app a try? Here’s a direct link to the Apple App Store.
Let me know if you try it out – and any other features that should be shared!