Over the last month I have been part of a beta testing session for a new mobile application that just hit the market a little over a week ago. Tacit is billed as an online to real world presence application to let your contacts know the best way to get in contact with you.
There have been many times that I get a phone call just at the wrong time. Mostly when I am in a work meeting or at personal outing that I just don’t want to be disturbed. Tacit is aimed to fix that solution by letting your contacts know what’s the best possible way to get a hold of you at that moment in time.
First Time Use
After a very simple registration procedure, you just need to verify your phone number, the application hooks up to your calendars and contacts. Access to the calendar is used to automagically set your availability while contacts access is to see who in your phone book is already using Tacit. Since the application is still pretty new the user base is pretty low. In order to help this community grow there is a simple “Invite” button next to any contacts that are not in the system.
You can’t really make an application without having to answer some security questions and Tacit definitely falls into that category given the data that it is accessing. While the application is accessing the details of your calendar and contacts the only thing that is sent “over the wire” to the Tacit servers is the following
- Start and Stop times of your events. Note that this is only the times of the event, no other details such as name, location, etc.
- The phone numbers of your contacts. This is the best and most secure way of determining contacts that are in the system. Their name is shown in the application but is never saved or sent to the server.
At first the concept of the app seemed cool but I didn’t know how much I would use it. After only a couple days though I noticed that I tended to actually make sure that my calendar was up to date so that Tacit would see it and set my availability correctly. While it hasn’t replaced my phone application I do tend to check it before calling someone who I know is using the app.
This is definitely a 1.0 application, it has lots of room to grow. I know this not only from a user/testers perspective but also because I have been able to start contributing back fixes to the iOS version. I have seen a bit of the backlog and while I like the concept right now I think that future versions have the ability to really be impactful to a users daily habits.
So here is one really awesome thing about Tacit. No matter what smartphone platform your running, it’s covered! That’s not something you usually see in today’s market. So feel free to grab your friends phone and download the app for them. There are applications for Windows Phone 8.0 and up, Android 4.1 and up, and iOS 7.0 and up. Go here to download Tacit for your device.
Image Credit – Tacit on Facebook