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Triend: an app launching in Split to make tourism a community matter!

Nikolina Kukoč

Nikolina Kukoč

02.06.2022.

The tourist season is beginning to gain momentum here in Split, so we thought now would be the perfect time to shine a light on a new app launching right here in Split. An app that is community-based, personalized, decentralized, and described by one of its initiators as the anti-TripAdvisor.

Are you intrigued? Then sit back, relax, and discover the wonders of Triend through our chat with Matthew Hairsnape, its CEO. 😉

What is the story behind Triend?

“The story behind Triend is one of community. Our mission is reinventing the discovery, sharing, and rewarding of various recommendations and assistance.

My partner and I used to run a travel company called Beats Travel. It was a music tour operator for creating experiences for events and festivals across the globe. Beats Travel was also our first company and a start-up.

By working with festivals around the world, from Croatia to Iceland and India, we created unique experiences and also observed how various communities that the tours would attract interacted.

They all wanted to discover information from their communities but were struggling to find the answers they wanted in one place.

We saw this as a huge opportunity for having a personalized recommendation-based platform where you could also discover connected experiences in one linear platform.

We realized there was a global problem with how the world accesses consumer information, recommendations, and reviews.

Our research made us realize this information can be accessed digitally through 600 million blogs and following 38 million influencers’ suggestions. Meaning there is too much information online that is not personalized and can be unauthentic and, in some cases, unsafe.

So Triend’s mission is to give value to two sides. Getting the information you need but also rewarding the other side for sharing.

Our new currency is empowerment – learning, sharing, and teaching. Empower users to live out their near-to-ideal experiences and reward creators for their role in those experiences.”

How did you get the initial idea for Triend?

“The idea for Triend came from a combination of reasons in different situations. We noticed more and more people were asking for personalized recommendations for what they should do on their trips.

This made us wonder why isn’t there a platform where people can get the information as and when they need it, from people they follow and admire in their community?

Around the same time, I was spending time with a friend who was a well-known YouTuber. He uploaded a picture of himself and saw the messages flood through: “Where should I go in Croatia? What was your favorite party? Where to eat?”

We realized that people really wanted personalized information to help them with their experiences and that there was a huge need for a recommendation platform that not only gave value to the creators but also gave the assurance that the users would get the help they needed, rather than unanswered DMs.

We also realized there needed to be an incentive created to assure these responses were met.

Not only for holidaymakers and similar experiences but also for people who needed personalized answers in real-time.

For example, I came up with the reason for Help2Earn with Triend when I was stuck in a petrol shortage in South America. I could not find the information I needed and said to myself:

“I would literally pay a local to help me out right now with an instant answer!”

We thought that, whether you are a top-class scuba diver, travel content creator, or just know your city like the back of your hand, these should be quantifiable skills and that you should be rewarded for sharing them.

As Airbnb did for homes and Uber did for cars, we realized the idea of Triend: to reward people for sharing their intellectual property and experiences directly as and when people need it.”

How exactly does Triend work?

“In a nutshell, the Triend mobile video app allows you to discover nearby video recommendations from your community or alternatively suggest and help with the help or queries.

Triend is not only an app for discovery, it is a platform to help others in a safe place to ask questions to improve your life experiences.

Triend works as a Web3 platform that rewards users with cryptocurrency for helping each other. It integrates token and Web3 methodology.

For example, if you arrive in Split, you can suddenly see rated video experiences the Triend community have posted. Alternatively, if you arrive in Split and need to find something, you can post it on the Triend notice board and get personal video replies right away.

Our aim is to be the anti-TripAdvisor – a decentralized platform where you can get honest, authentic, and personalized recommendations wherever or whenever you need them.”

How different is Triend from similar apps?

“There are a lot of social media video apps such as TikTok and Instagram.

Triend is not a social app and the aim is not to monetize hours of scrolling.

It is to act as a recommendation platform connecting people to get the information they desire wherever or whenever they need it.

There are other apps out there that focus on authentic travel video and itinerary sharing, but our mission is much bigger than that. We don’t want to break off a piece of the big boys like Instagram and Tik Tok, we want to create something with a new offering developing in the community-driven Web3 space.

An open community that can help each other, as and when the community members need it.

Filtered to what you need, not on the off chance something random that you’ll find inspiring. There is no editing on the platform so what you see is what you get.

Unlike other apps, users can reward each other instantly with the Triend token and currency.

Our aim is for four people to get value from discovering recommendations from their desired community, not to have 4000 random videos for scrolling through when someone is bored.”

What is the biggest obstacle you have faced working on Triend so far and how did you resolve it?

“The biggest obstacle we have faced with Triend was actually this time last year. We had a big testing plan in Split and had our team ready to hit the ground running. We had been working on the app development for just over a year.

Close to launch we had an inspection of the code and found out that the app was nowhere near ready to be released.

The way it was explained to us it was like a glass house. It looked nice and shiny from the outside but using it could bring the whole place down.

We had to delay everything and reassess the project. My partner and I were not from a technical background and realized we needed to overcome this and make sure it never happened again.

This meant we stopped outsourcing the team.

We needed to bring in an internal CTO who could help us get to the next level. This is exactly what we did and it has changed the way we not only approach the development but even the methodology we use.”

How does Triend benefit tourists and locals?

“We like to think that Triend will benefit both the tourists and locals in different ways.

The Triend App offers tourists the chance to discover experiences they may not otherwise.

It also rewards them for sharing with others. This way tourists can upload recommendations and be rewarded by using their tokens to redeem experiences in a location they are visiting.

For the launch in Split this summer it will be either through drinks, dinner, or a tour experience. We want Triend to be the only app a tourist needs in Split to navigate around their needs.

Our app benefits locals as it is a new way for local businesses and all inhabitants to share their experiences.

By connecting with locals on Triend, one can find exact geo locations and accompanying videos of what the experiences look like. This enhances their discovery.

There are other ways how Triend will benefit locals. The first and biggest is that they can get rewarded in cryptocurrency for sharing their experiences. As we move forward, there will also be a fiat aspect.

So if someone arrives in Split, they will be able to connect with a local. The locals will be able to put their rate in either fiat or token. They set the price for the recommendation they will offer!

For local businesses, Triend is a new way to highlight their business on a decentralized platform.

People can connect, ask questions, and they can promote, while businesses can promote themselves with tips and hints on each experience and a link with the geolocation.

We hope that local businesses will use Triend to provide authentic experiences.

There is no editing on the platform so what you see is what you get!”

What is the best thing about Triend?

“The best thing about Triend is that it is a platform that not only helps you live a new experience and connect with a community of like-minded people, but it also rewards you for helping others.

There is no app out there that will reward you for sharing your experiences.

There is a huge market with Play2Earn, where the more people play games, for example, they will receive crypto. But nothing exists yet that delivers positives, which is what we are creating with Help2Earn.

The creation of Triend came about during a very pivotal two years where the world has changed so much.

Unlike many, we were fortunate enough to be able to get backing right before the lockdown. This allowed us to innovate and see the fundamental problems people were facing.”

Why is Split the best place for Triend’s launch?

“The founding team has a lot of love for Split and we have spent many years here. We have seen the tourist boom in the past ten years and also all the problems that come along with the mass tourism influx.

Split is the best place because, while it is evolving as a tourist destination, it can also offer much more.

From our experience, a lot of people come to Split but miss so much of the city if it is not right in front of them. There is no strong tech platform that can improve their stay here and that lets them really experience all the amazing things and the variety Split has to offer, off the traditional tourist paths.

There is so much to offer that isn’t highlighted and Triend could really be the opportunity to do so.

Unless you know a local, it is difficult to find different and exciting experiences.

By launching in Split, we can offer the chance for tourists and digital nomads to discover more of the city. And also benefit the local businesses that aren’t as visible because they are not located right on the Riva.”

So, there you have it – the story behind Triend. The app is ready for all who wish to join the Triend community!

There is also an NFT giveaway competition still going on – you should check that out, as well. We’ll also helpfully provide links to dive into for all of you who were intrigued enough by this story to research more about Triend and Help2Earn. 🙂

We wish Matthew and the rest of the Triend team lots of success in building the Triend community! 😀

Visuals by: Triend

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About author:

Nikolina Kukoč

Researching is woven into my DNA, but I am a musician at heart. Interested in too many things and always curious. Forever in love with Split and enchanted by people who teach me new things. When I am not creating content about Split's tech community, you will find me in singing rehearsals, somewhere in nature, in the theater, or with my head stuck in a book. I do my best to live by the verse from the opera "Fedora" by Umberto Giordano: "Love forbids you not to love."

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