Tagwhat is the latest mobile augmented reality browser to hit the iPhone and the Android. We take a ‘first look’ at the demo application available in the app store.
Tagwhat differentiates itself from other augmented reality applications by positioning itself as an augmented reality social networking application rather than as yet another augmented reality browser providing visual search. As a social media tool, either you or someone you follow has to tag content before it appears, if it’s a restaurant you like, tag it, if not it will never appear and you won’t have 100 restaurants cluttering up your view.
There is a lot to like about Tagwhat. Your tags are private and are only shared with people you invite, so not everyone is going to know where you live, where you work, or even where you are drinking right now. If you value your privacy then this is obviously going to be a big plus point. You can also tag directly from your mobile device so if you are meeting friends you can quickly geotag the location, snap a photo and your location will be shared with them. Using Tagwhat they are able to get directions and navigate to your location and even leave your comments.
Because all your tags are private you’ll need to invite your friends, the more friends you have using the application the more useful it will become. Finding friends is simple thanks to the very useful ‘invite’ function that will tell you which of your Facebook and Twitter friends are using the application so you can invite and follow them.
For social networking and sharing content, inevitably comparisons will be made with other services such as Google Latitude, Junaio, and Wikitude.me, but I don’t see a huge overlap with any of these, they all offer different aspects of sharing so all have their uses. I use Wikitude.me to share with the entire community and I’ll be keeping Tagwhat to share tags with friends and family.
Tagwhat is free and can be installed from the AppStore or Marketplace. I should also point out that the iPhone version is very much billed as a demo version. There are some features not implemented, such as the channels feature which turns Tagwhat into a fully-fledged augmented reality browser.