You are here

Ambient Social Networking: The New (Old) Way to Network

The latest buzz at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive centers around a new type of social network call ambient social networking. Ambient social apps would allow you to connect with someone in your proximity that shares the same interests as you. Some players to this niche market are Highlight, Uberlife, and 5Degrees. These apps allow you to see not only the profile of someone next to you who has the same app, but also his or her profile as well. The obvious detractor is the idea that a complete stranger can see information about you that you may not want that particular person to see.

For those who don't mind being found this way, it would be nice if the app could link to any other social ambient app that the other person might have. Currently both people must be running the same app for the service to work.

Time will tell if this nascent market will take off with Facebook-like zeal, or if it's just another fad that will be a distant memory next year.

Tell us what you think of ambient social networking in the comments. Is it something you're willing to try out or is it too creepy? Take our ambient social networking poll and join the discussion.

Read More: PCWorld