In the adult world, where jobs and responsibilities exist, making time for friends and socializing can oftentimes revolve around the calendar.
This new platform makes friendships and social life easier to manage and is based on your interests and availability.
Vancouver, meet Sphere.
What is Sphere and how does it make socializing easier?
Sphere is an artificial intelligence (AI) system that automates events between you and your friends based on your interests and availabilities.
Founder and CEO Alexander Labrie started the company in 2016 and had been working on the platform with his team for several years.
"My motivation for starting the company was to help people get off social media and build real meaningful connections through shared experiences. The other motivation [was] to address some of the nastiness that often happens with online connections and, instead, get people to connect in person for real," Labrie told Vancouver Is Awesome over the phone.
"The system automates the creation of the event," he explains. "Every week [users will] be getting event suggestions of whom to meet with when and where."
For example, Labrie continues, someone may get a suggestion to play ping pong with certain friends on a Thursday night. Or they may get a suggestion to attend a local, live event, such as a concert, with certain friends on a certain day and time.
The platform curates a list of live events as well as suggests informal events, like meeting up for coffee, adds Labrie.
How does the platform work?
Upon signing up, users can expect features that allow them to set their availabilities, list their interests, and invite friends.
"Let's say someone works nine to five, Monday to Friday. They can block off the times on a calendar [on] the calendar page. There's also a list of interests to choose from," the founder says.
"We have around 2000 [interests] that users can search through and add to their interests," he adds.
However, to automate events, friends will need to sign up and input their availability and interests as well.
When it launches on Sept. 1, Sphere will only have a website, although both an iOS and Android app are in the works and are expected to release shortly after the launch. "Currently people can sign up on the website and get events suggestions sent through SMS," Labrie says.
Sphere launch party
To celebrate the platform's launch after a two-year pandemic hiatus, Sphere is hosting an outdoor event at Kitsilano Beach the day after the platform goes live.
"This will be a great way to reconnect with old friends and/or make new ones," writes the event description.
The outdoor get-together will be a great start to what Sphere aims to do: make real human connections.