iPhone App Review: BLÜ Connect

iPhone App Review: BLÜ Connect

June 10th, 2011 by

Social networks are great for when you are at a computer or have your face buried in a handheld device. They can help you connect with people, but ironically they help you connect when you’re at a distance. I’m on Facebook and you’re on Facebook, and though we may be both commenting on the same photo and making a connection, we are also likely at a great distance from one another and not likely to ever meet in person.

BLÜ Connect from developer Hap Sol.com is an attempt to bridge that gap. By using the Bluetooth connection available in your iOS device, you can set up a profile in the app and it will scan for other people that match a set of criteria. You can then add the information that those people have chosen to include in their BLÜ Connect profile to your own device’s address book. Use it at parties or other social situations, at business gatherings like a conference or a meeting, or anywhere that you might find a large group of people and want to try to make a more personal, in-person “social network”.

How It Works

First be sure your Bluetooth is turned on in your device settings. Then fill out your profile in the app, including as much or as little information as you want. You then fill out the “Criteria” section, which is how the app will determine whether another nearby user of the program should be invited to make a connection with you. For instance, include an age range of 20 to 29 and a gender of Male to only send invites to men in that age range. Including more information in the Criteria portion will by extension make the app less likely to send out invites, since you’re narrowing the field (men who are 20-29 and who are doctors, for instance, is a smaller group than just plain “men”).

Once a match is made then an invite card pops up, asking you if you would like to save the person’s information. It will save to your device’s contact list as well as the app’s Connect list.

Pros And Cons

The app is easy to set up and easy to use, and pretty much runs on its own once you launch it. If your device is capable of background processes then the app itself doesn’t need to be active in order to work, but if you have an older iThing you will need to make sure that app is running at all times when you want it to scan for other users.

As with any app of this kind, the main drawback to its usefulness is having a critical mass of other users available to be able to work. You can have the app running all day and night everywhere you go, but without anyone else to play with you may as well take your ball and go home.


I think the developers are really on to something with this idea. Having an app running that will constantly scan (or rather, scan at an interval that you can adjust in the app’s settings menu) for other users? It’s almost like you’re building your own social network, except it’s for people that are actually within 30 feet of where you’re standing! Great idea, we just need a few more users running the app in order to make the magic happen.

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