Melbourne, Australia, May 10, 2017 --(PR.com
)-- Meeting new people or making new friends as an adult can prove challenging, especially if you’ve recently relocated. Struggling to find a social scene that you connect with can lead to feelings of isolation or loneliness. New app "Heyo" seeks to help with these issues.
Launching in early 2017, Heyo is an app for meeting like-minded people nearby. “It’s like Tinder for friendship, but you’re matched by your interests rather than your photos. It’s designed for expats, travellers, international students or anyone who has relocated. It's not about how you look, but who you are,” says Denton Hockley, Founder of Heyo.
Matches are based on shared interests instead of profile pictures. By taking the emphasis away from appearances, Heyo allows users to focus on what is important, such as interests, beliefs, values etc. Connections made over these mutual interests and shared values are much more likely to lead to meaningful friendships.
“We encourage deeper interactions through insightful and entertaining conversation-starter questions,” River Satya, Heyo co-founder. When you connect with another user, you choose from four thought-provoking questions to get the ball rolling. Conversations begun this way tend to be much more engaging and it’s faster to uncover common values and interests.
“The ultimate goal of Heyo is to connect nearby users based on shared interests, expedite the ‘getting to know you’ phase, and foster real world friendships,” Emma Hoffman, Heyo cofounder.
Heyo was conceived by Denton Hockley and Merwyn Wijaya during a Startup Weekend in Ubud, Bali in 2015. Originally born out of a desire to connect with interesting people in airports during long layovers, it evolved into an app for anyone moving to a new city or looking to make new friends. Denton was joined by River (ex Google Engineer), and more recently by Emma Hoffman (serial entrepreneur).
Sociologists have noted three main elements for new friendships: close proximity, repeated communication, and a social context that encourages people to let down their guard. For new students, travellers, or people who have recently relocated to a new city, these elements can be challenging to create. To put these challenges into perspective:
46% of Americans said "yes" when asked if they experience regular feelings of loneliness
Recent research suggests that persistent loneliness increases the risk of death by 26%
~1.23 billion people travelled abroad in 2016
~50.5 million expats worldwide in 2016 (56.8 million by 2017)
~6 million students studying abroad in 2016 with annual growth rate of 10%
Currently in public beta, Heyo is available for free download on iOS and will officially launch in early 2017.
Denton Hockley - Business Development Cofounder
River Satya - Technical Cofounder (former Google Engineer)
Emma Hoffman - Marketing Cofounder (former Founder of bigdeal and Classhopper)
Merwyn Wijaya - UX & Design Cofounder