NIX Solutions: noplace Took First Place in the App Store

In an effort to bring “sociality” back to “social media,” a new app called noplace has jumped to the top of the App Store by moving out of invite-only mode on Wednesday. Aimed at a younger audience—or those looking to connect with friends or shared interests—noplace is reminiscent of a modern-day Myspace. The new app features colorful, customizable profiles that allow people to share everything from relationship status to what they’re listening to or watching, what they’re reading or doing, and more.

It can be assumed that noplace has good prospects in a complex social market. According to TechCrunch, the network had already gone viral before its public launch thanks to a feature that allows users to express themselves by customizing their profile colors. While Gen Z may not have grown up with Myspace and all its chaotic settings, they still have a sense of nostalgia for the social media they never had.

NIX Solutions

The Vision and Experience of Founder Tiffany Zhong

Founder and CEO Tiffany Zhong, who previously founded her own fund, Pineapple Capital, focused on investing in early-stage consumer products, and worked at Binary Capital as a teenager, believes that part of the magic and fun of the Internet is gone now. “Everything is very unified,” she says. Over the past ten years, Zhong has played with all sorts of consumer social apps, so she has a good nose for the next big hit. In 2015, she tagged as the startup that would become the next Snap or Twitter after realizing how much it caught the attention of kids and other young users.

Zhong frequently tweeted her analysis on products, especially consumer apps, which earned her a large following on social media. Given her experience, it’s no surprise that Zhong has well-researched ideas about what might attract today’s young users to a new social media app. “I’ve always loved communication,” she says, but adds that social media doesn’t feel social anymore. “Everything is just media. There is a big feeling of disunity.”

This is partly because all our content is now highly personalized, says the founder. “We watch other people’s content and become interested in other people’s interests rather than our friends, so it makes it harder to find community as a result,” she says. The idea behind noplace is to create a place where people can follow their friends and also find those who share their interests in one place.

Features and Future Prospects

The app offers a customizable mini-profile where you can share what you’re currently doing and customize it to suit your interests. A user’s profile may have tags that the app calls “stars,” which are interests or topics that concern them. For example, users can add their astrological sign, Myers-Briggs personality type, hobbies, or fandoms to their profile so they can be found by other users. There’s even a “Top 10 Best Friends” section, reminiscent of Myspace’s “8 Best Friends.”

However, noplace is more like a global group chat or Twitter/X competitor than a Facebook alternative, as it focuses on text updates and doesn’t yet support photos or videos. “Facebook 10 years ago—or Facebook when I used it in middle school—was just a cool thing, an update to life,” says Zhong. “That’s gone now, right? You can follow [friends] on Instagram, but it’s still rare moments, fewer updates.”

Also on noplace, users should share what they are currently doing, not what they have already done. If you’re in a new city, watching a show, or listening to a new band, this could be your status update. The app offers two feeds, one with your friends and the other a global feed of all app users, both in reverse chronological order. There are no private profiles. Instead of algorithms, noplace uses artificial intelligence technology to generate suggestions and curate. The app doesn’t edit your feed for you, but uses artificial intelligence to offer summaries of what you missed.

The Tokyo and San Francisco-based founder began working on noplace in the second half of last year with a remotely distributed team of seven people. noplace launched into an invite-only beta late last year and “accidentally went viral” after the team distributed several invites to K-pop fans. Now the app is poised to offer young Twitter users an alternative and the same text-feed posting experience, but combines friend-finding features and customizations that will appeal to that demographic. The app is free to download on iOS and is available on the web in read-only mode. noplace competes with other friend-finding apps aimed at Gen Z, such as Wizz, Yubo, Purp, LMK and others.

The startup has received funding from investors such as 776 (Alexis Ohanian), Forerunner Ventures and others, adds NIX Solutions. The company raised $15 million in Series A1 funding at a pre-money valuation of $75 million, bringing its total raised to more than $19 million, according to PitchBook.

We’ll keep you updated on the latest developments as noplace continues to grow and evolve.