“There have been three revolutions in the virtual networking or communication world,” states Pushkar Mahatta, Founder of Worldfloat.com, a social networking website with a global user base, when asked by The Hindu on the need for Worldfloat.com.
He adds that Emails were the first revolution and Facebook, Orkut, etc were the second revolution that provided a closed group to stay in touch with each other. But Pushkar believed the communication was limited here and hence created Worldfloat – a global communication device which facilitates communication between many people on this planet on an equally diverse platform.
Pushkar started his efforts in June 2012 after getting the idea while reading Steven Johnson’s book “Where Good Ideas Come From” which talks of liquid networks. “I immediately saw people as bubbles. I then recruited some of the best IT engineers to put together this unique float technology which was hard to code,” he said in an interview with The Times Of India.
Again while sharing user numbers while talking to TOI, he said that, “The platform has around 6 million users and by June-end the platform should have more than 10 million users.”
Well, that was more than enough for me to give a spin to the next generation social network that boasts of taking over Facebook in the coming future.
How does the social network Worldfloat work?
The network which has incorporated a Facebook login, also has an email login. After authentication, the network asked me to provide some details and list my home town.
The first look of the platform is out of the box and it took me nearly 10 minutes to understand from where I should start using the network. The video that was provided is simply of no use; it is jazzy with zero information about the features of the product. The below snapshot gives you a quick look of the home page.
Are you wondering why are people floating like fishes in an aquarium? Well, it is the floating technology that has been implemented on this network. I did some Google to find more about the technology but I couldn’t find much. Let me know if you are aware of floating technology.
So the floating pieces are people from a particular city. You can browse through cities via a click and add people from that city. You can also click on a world map below to go directly to a particular city and add friends. You can check the profile details of the person whom you are adding, though the profile page is really shabby with some basic features.
The home page also has features like City News, City Tube, Personal Channel, Messages and Friends List. The City News provides the important news from your city and City Tube is the list of videos from the local city. However, City News fails to show any news but shows updates from unknown people. Similarly, the City Tube shows YouTube videos from Indian users as well as US users. In fact when you change cities, you find Indian accounts floating in the different countries. For example, the below screen is of Paris, France but it is swamped by Indian users who are based out in Indian cities.
Apart from this, the platform has a gamification feature under the name Treasure Hunt, where a user needs to click on the floating currency and scores points on the hits. Top scores are going to be given Rs. 1000/- vouchers. Rest you have a status update feature which allows you to share your thoughts with your community.
The site also curates news from popular news sites under the tab News Pipe. There are sections like Travel, Health, Movies which curate videos on certain keywords from YouTube. Movies section is showing movies from YouTube which have been illegally uplaoded by anonymous users. For example, the popular 3 Idiots movie embedded on the site, was uploaded on YouTube by some anonymous user. I hope that Pushkar Mahatta is aware of such activity happening in his next generation social network.
Do we need Worldfloat?
No! Forget being a revolution, Worldfloat is a pain for the eyes. The floating technology and the design looks pathetic from every angle. Even Orkut was far better than what Worldfloat looks like right now. The features like Travel, Health, Movies, etc. along with a social network is confusing. I think Worldfloat wants to be the Internet but even if it is trying to do the same then Pushkar should go back to the drawing board with his expert team.
I don’t find a single feature worth talking about. I am wondering what security features the network would have when it is showing me updates of people who are not my friend and if you click on the profile pages of any random user, you can see their email addresses too. Wonder how safe it is for a social network to show email ids to everyone!
So before I wrap this review, I have some questions for Pushkar Mahatta:
1. When was Facebook a closed group of network?
2. It has been said by you that Worldfloat provides a way to communicate with anyone from anywhere in this world. But to talk, the other person needs to accept the friend request first . So how can we call Worldfloat a global communication device which facilitates communication between many people on this planet on an equally diverse platform. Right now Twitter is the only network that does it.
3. Float technology will become a spam when more and more users will join the site. It would be difficult to click on a particular profile since there would be too many users floating from every direction. How does the network plan to stop such distraction?
4. Treasure hunt, the gamification model that has been implemented is bit shady. According to the rules book, the top scorer would get Rs. 1000 voucher but it is not clear for how long one needs to play. And in the interview given at TOI by you, there has been a mention of Rs. 10, 000 as cash prize but when does that trigger?
What surprises me is that The Times of India has covered two stories, where one has been the interview where the Founder boasts of VCs offering him $300 million but he does not wish to sell. However, this contradicts with his interview in Hindu, where he said that he might consider giving a small stake!
My sincere appeal is that both the leading news dailies of the country – TOI and Hindu should spend some time exploring Worldfloat.
Whatever it be Worldfloat is nowhere close to Facebook so don’t waste your time to give it a try. And, The Times Of India, please stop calling him India’s Mark Zuckerberg.