Timehop: Remember When …

Every once in a while, I think about all the tweets, Facebook updates, Foursquare check-ins and Instagram photos I’ve taken and wished that I could look back at them, you know, like looking at an old photo album. It’s not useful or productive, but they’re digital memories that I think are pretty cool. I guess someone else started getting nostalgic about all the time they’ve wasted, er, spent sharing their stories on social media and wanted to relive them. And thus Timehop was born, a veritable digital time machine.

Bring on the memories.

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Getting Started

At its most basic function, Timehop provides you with digital data from your social accounts that correspond with the present day. That means that every day Timehop will pull up tweets, status updates, Instagram photos and the like from your past. And while that concept is cool in and of itself, what really sets this app apart is its remarkable design.

After you download the app, you will need to log in to any of your relevant social networks. The ones that Timehop pulls from are Facebook, Foursquare, Instagram, Twitter and Flickr. Obviously, the more social networks you log into the more results you will get. Timehop will pull stories from when you first opened your account, which is good and bad … obviously, there are a few photos that you might uncover that you probably wish to forget. But hey, Y.O.L.O.

It's extremely easy to connect all of your social media accounts.

It’s extremely easy to connect all of your social media accounts.

Once you finish up with your logins, Timehop will show you all of your friends who also have an affinity for their past social media exploits. Obviously, not that many of my friends know about this app (but, that will soon change). Timehop allows you to manage which of your friends can view the stories you share by toggling them on or off.

That’s pretty much it for setup.

What’s Next

Sit back and wait for your memories to unfold. No, but seriously, you have to wait. Each morning, Timehop will pull together everything that you did on social media on that particular day — everything — and send you a push notification.

Oh, hey, random photo from four years ago …

Oh, hey, random photo from four years ago …

Each social media story has either a moon or a sun icon by it (to let you know what time of day it was posted), as well as the actual time it was posted, what social network it was posted on and the ability to Send and/or Share that particular item. When you tap the Send button, a few boxes will pop up giving you the option to copy the link to the story, text the story, email the story or exit out of the button’s features. When you tap the Share button, a new window will pop up allowing you to share your little slice of history through your feed on the Timehop app and with Facebook and Twitter.

Sharing is caring.

Sharing is caring.

Design

So, this little app is probably one of the best-designed apps I have seen in a very long time. There are so many details that just seem effortless. And I love their time-traveling dinosaur mascot. He pops up everywhere, literally. On the main screen when you pull to refresh, the little guy is rotating the spinner. And on the shared stories page, when you pull to refresh, he puts on his time-traveling goggles and jetpacks up out of the frame. On the Settings page, when you pull to refresh, Abe is dancing. Brilliant.

Abe, the time-hopping dinosaur.

Abe, the time-hopping dinosaur.

So, other than being forever amused by Abe, the rest of the app’s design is pretty slick. A feature that I love in your personal feed is that the date headers stay in place while scrolling through all relevant stories from that time period. And the color choice is also very promising, it promises to not assault my eyes or feel dated.

Conclusion

Timehop is definitely one of the best apps that I have come across in a long time. It’s extremely simple, but the design is beautiful and clever. It fulfills a need that I didn’t even know I had. I actually do look at this app every morning so that I can see my stories from the past. And while the app doesn’t offer the ability to look at previous day’s stories, I find that quite honestly, I agree with that decision. I enjoy the focus remaining on one day at a time; it definitely keeps me engaged and eagerly waiting for the next day’s stories.


Summary

Get all of your old social network posts in one convenient place.

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  • Mark Simpson

    Nice article :)

    I’m wondering if the app will change your behaviour so you do something spectacular, just to see it again this time next year?

  • http://www.shintero.com Leo Ji

    I’d forgotten about a lot of things that I’ve done in the past… well, thanks to this, at least now I’ll remember. :) .

    Certainly I’m going to try to be more active on my social networks so that this time next year I can go like: “Oh, this is when I got TimeHop!”.

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