Whrrl Wants to Know Your Story

This app is not currently available in the App Store.

Facebook and Twitter are built on the idea of short quips about your thoughts and activities. Twitter asks, "What are you doing?" Facebook wants to know, "What's on your mind?"

Instead Whrrl asks, "What's your story?" This upstart social network seeks to add some depth (if that term can really be applied to social networking) to your online life. A user is encouraged to post a series of stories —text and photos of events that you are at or have been to. With Whrrl others can then add their own tags to indicate they were there or leave comments. The service is the brainchild of Seattle start-up Pelago. And instead of competing against other services, the developers of Whrrl see it as a way to complement the social networking experience. Whrrl allows you to share your stories through Facebook and Twitter.

User feeds from Whrrl read like a narrative. Instead of the quick "Doing laundry!" type of messages that are common in Twitter and Facebook, most Whrrl feeds feature an event and then let the pictures tell the details. The Whrrl app lets you peruse others' stories and comments. You can swipe through photos quite easily and tap to leave a comment or view the others that have been left.

Because the focus is on stories, location plays prominently in Whrrl. But this leads to a major annoyance - Whrrl constantly asks to turn on your GPS for adding your location. If you are someone who uses GPS sparingly because you like the battery to operate for more than three hours a day, expect to get irritated by the constant pop-up menu. But there is a pretty innovative feature in Whrrl that allows you to say your location so it can be added to a story.

If you are a Whrrl user, then this app will be a nice complement to the service. If, like many, you are already a bit overwhelmed by keeping up with Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Friendfeed, Ning, or the rest of the slew of services competing for your time, then Whrrl is probably not worth the free download.

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This app is not currently available in the App Store.

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