Locket, a brand-new social software, just shot to the top of the App Store charts due to its ingenious idea of displaying live photographs from friends in a widget on your iOS home screen. Or to put it another way, it transforms Apple’s widget system, which is generally used to display information like news, weather, motivational quotations, or photographs from your own iPhone’s gallery, into a private social networking platform.
Matt Moss, a recent UC Santa Barbara graduate who had won a student grant from Apple and was developing a platform for user research and testing called Hawkeye Labs, came up with the concept for the app.
Moss says, “I created it as a birthday present for my partner last summer. We were ready to begin a long-distance relationship since she would be returning to school in the autumn, he adds. It seemed incredibly attractive to have a small snapshot of her on my home screen. Just a pleasant means of communication.
The software was created over the course of a week or two, and the creator ended up using it quite a bit with his girlfriend during the last six months. They sent each other an average of five images every day. Locket became a fascinating method for users to look back on their images since it also preserves the photos that are transmitted and received in its history section.
The acquaintances of the couple soon became aware of it and inquired as to whether they, too, might utilize it with their own significant others, families, or friends. Moss made the decision to release Locket to the public via the App Store.
Since the app’s introduction on January 1st, more than 2 million people had registered as of this morning. According to Apptopia’s app store data, Locket, which had already surpassed Facebook as the most popular social networking app the day before, surpassed all other apps as the top one on Sunday. Apptopia claims that as of yesterday, it has only received statistics on around 1 million global installs, with 31% coming from the United States.
Moss attributes Locket’s quick uptake to its success on TikTok, where he posted videos to an associated corporate account for Locket where he could demonstrate the software. Over the course of a few days, his video acquired over 100,000 views. The unique sound used in the original Locket video and the app were subsequently included in other TikTok users’ creations.
This contributed to TikTok’s young user base further exploding for the app. In fact, a U.K.-based TikTok user’s video received more than 5 million views in a single day, according to Moss.
Although it’s usual for app developers to use TikTok to boost installations at launch, Moss disputes that any paid influencer marketing occurred in this case and claims that he did not run sponsored adverts on TikTok or anywhere else.
Because to its TikTok exposure and the fact that its early users encouraged their friends to download and try the app, Locket is still ranked No. 1 among the Top Free Apps for the iPhone today.
Download Locket from the App Store, join up, and then validate your phone number to use the app.
Then, in order to operate, Locket asks access to your iPhone’s Contacts and Camera. A better privacy-focused solution would be for Locket to allow users to forgo complete address book access and instead allow them to invite friends through solo invites. Moss informs us that he is thinking about altering this behaviour in order to make the app simpler to use. He claims that Locket just opens the iMessage window so you may edit the text sent to your friends and neither stores your contact information nor sends invitations automatically using its own phone number.
However, we discovered that if you opt to reject Apple’s pop-up that asks for authorization to access your Contacts, you are unable to use the app at all.
You’ll then add the widget for the app on your iOS home screen after inviting and adding friends to Locket. The widget will display the photographs that your friends add during the day. Launch the app whenever you want to add your own photographs to be shared to your friends’ widgets.
The app truly doesn’t provide much more than that. There aren’t any sophisticated camera effects or filters, and you can’t upload photos from your Camera Roll either. The interaction is intended to be a method for a small group of up to five friends or family members to swap images in real time.
Moss is now considering his options in light of Locket’s fast ascent to the top of the App Store. Later on, he wants to add a subscription-based business model, support for more widgets, and maybe an Android version. The question of whether he will accept outside funding, though, is still up in the air.
We are undoubtedly considering several things, he claims. “Let’s see,”
However, the developer thinks Locket has more potential than just its present picture widget experience, and it may potentially develop a set of capabilities if users share more photographs over time.
According to Moss, “I think there is something quite substantial to be constructed in the space of close friends and family.” “I do believe that people, especially younger people, are becoming a little bit more fatigued with applications that are really metric- and ad-centric,” the author said.
The author continues, “You end up having these enormous social circles on the app — where you have 1,000 friends on Instagram or you have to exchange Snapchats back and forth with your 100 closest friends — which actually takes a lot of effort at the end of the day. So, Moss continues, “I believe there’s a big desire for that concept of developing something that’s more focused towards those five closest individuals, or those 10 closest people, and then offering a method to make your phone seem more personal and directed towards people instead of these applications.
The experience of a collaborative picture widget is not exclusive to Locket. A other app called Magnets, released in 2020, featured a like concept but also permitted texting pals via its widget. In this market, there are more apps like Ekko, Widgetgram, Lettie, Tile Widget, Fave, and others. None, though, has yet to reach a certain critical mass.
Because some customers didn’t appear to comprehend how to use the widget or had trouble with the onboarding process, Locket, which is now available as a free download on iOS, only received a 3.4-star rating. The latter appeared to mostly take place when the app was having difficulty during the height of its viral upsurge, but we’ve since tried Locket and discovered the issues to be more minor.