We don't usually cover business software around these parts, but Anchor, a social networking app launching today on iOS, goes out of its way to look like a regular app. The brain child of a former GM of Flickr and ex-VP at AOL, it's sort of like Facebook, in that it allows coworkers to join groups, post status updates, upload photos (complete with filters) and like each other's activity. (In lieu of a thumbs up, you give someone a rock-on sign.) It also has built-in chat and contact cards, so in theory you could use it as a one-stop shop for communicating with coworkers instead of cobbling together various other apps.
You could even compare it to Yammer, the social network eventually bought by Microsoft, except Anchor's co-founders say the app is more about coworkers bonding with each other, than necessarily being productive. (Imagine that!) Again, it's available today for iOS (and the web too), with free lifetime membership if you get it before September 25th. It's also coming soon to Android and Google Glass, we're told. With no commitment you should give it a try -- the UI is extremely slick -- though we have to wonder if it's really that big a faux pas to friend your coworkers on Facebook. After all, who's afraid of the occasional like from Tim Stevens?
Anchor screenshotsSee all photos
Workstagram? Officebook? Nope, It's Anchor: The Only Mobile Social Network for WorkAnchor from Tomfoolery Inc, brings team-based social networking to the office on mobile and Web
June 27, 2013 – San Francisco, CA - Tomfoolery Inc., the "Work Awesome" startup founded by former AOL and Yahoo! execs, today announced the launch of their new social platform for work, Anchor. Anchor is a first of its kind social network, launching as an iOS and a Web-based app. Unlike other work apps that are focused on task lists, productivity tools, and document sharing, Anchor is designed to be a consumer-quality communication tool built specifically for the workplace. Anchor creates true personal connections between teams and team members, allowing them to share photos, links, locations, and more. Anchor also features sophisticated chat functionality, allowing people to connect via 1:1 messaging or group messaging, as well as sharing links, photos, and more while chatting. Anchor aims to bring together coworkers who are increasingly remote but always connected to their mobile devices.
"We spend more of our waking hours with our coworkers than with anyone else, and these relationships at work are incredibly important." said Kakul Srivastava, CEO and cofounder of Tomfoolery Inc. "People at work need better tools to connect, communicate, and share. Anchor is all about bringing the same great user experiences that we've come to expect in our personal lives to the office. There are plenty of tools that try to help you work more efficiently. We want you to work more joyfully."
Anchor lets people at work create and join teams around projects, topics, events, workout groups, coffee and lunch orders, or anything else with their coworkers. Moreover, Tomfoolery, Inc recognizes that today, work happens not only across functional and hierarchical boundaries, it happens across companies. Anchor just as fluidly allows people to connect and communicate with collaborators at other companies.
"I'm lucky, I work in a startup with a small, tight-knit team. We know everything about each other, from favorite music, to kids and families, to the way each of us orders our burrito at lunch." Said Sol Lipman, CPO and cofounder of Tomfoolery. "We believe that every team in every office, no matter how big or small, should enjoy that same social atmosphere. That closeness makes every team better and it makes work a heck of a lot more fun. That's what we're all about at Tomfoolery, we've just packed it all into your mobile phone."
"What's more, Anchor is a platform, not just an app," continued Lipman. "We will be creating a full suite of "Work Awesome" social apps that will connect to Anchor, as well as supporting additional mobile platforms and 3rd party apps."
Anchor is free to download, and available in the iOS app store at: www.download.anchor.me, or online as a Web app at www.anchor.me
Tomfoolery, Inc. builds crazy, beautiful, useful apps for people at work. We want to "Make Work Awesome". Founded by successful entrepreneurs out of Yahoo! and AOL with deep backgrounds in social mobile consumer technology, and backed with investments from key Silicon Valley venture capitalists, Tomfoolery builds social tools and apps for the workplace.