App Review: Humin – Organizing Contacts Lists for Real People

August 23, 2014
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You know how you’re scrolling through your contact list on your phone and much like your Facebook friend list, you have a bunch of names there and you have no idea who they are or how you met them? Aside from sending them a text (cuz seriously, who calls anymore) and asking them the uncomfortable, “Hey so who is this?” you will probably not know who they are. Honestly, considering how far our mobile phone technology has come, you’d think they’d update the contact list to reflect this, to make it easier to keep track of our contacts, but sadly it isn’t so. Our contact list remains the same as it used to be – perhaps with some added tweaks, but not much.

Enter Humin, a newly released (to the public) app that is gunning to revolutionize how we remember and store names on our phone. According to their website, “Humin is a new phone app that captures all of your contacts and remembers them in the way you naturally think.

App Review: Humin - Organizing Contacts Lists for Real People

In theory this sounds amazing. I mean, this app links with your Facebook and LinkedIn and adds them to your calendar and email to provide context to people listed in your contact list. That sounds awesome – especially in a work environment. But in reality, sure I want to be able to remember and contact people who I want to keep in touch with but not with people I don’t really want to get in touch with me. Therein lies the problem. While this app sounds great – it still has a few bugs to work out – and I admire the way that they’re trying to create a contact list the way we naturally think, the reality is, do I really want to be this connected with everyone on my contact list?

Let’s be honest here, some people are just on there because you couldn’t get out of giving them your number. And in the promo video above the guy gives the girl his number in a bar, but as soon as he puts his name down (I assume this is the app pulling data from Facebook or whatever), out pops the people that the two have in common. Honestly, I don’t want my personal details to be given freely to a stranger like that. That just seems creepy. Or that my contact list is notified as soon as I travel to a place near them. Again, creepy. Nor do I want a person whose car breaks down to be getting in touch with me to come pick them up – not unless we’re good friends.

Am I starting to sound like a grump? Well I am! This app just seems a little stalker-ish to me. All this pseudo closeness that the app is trying to push on to us is great for when we are truly friends with our contacts. But let’s be honest here, how many people in your contact list do we really know? And how would you feel if you knew that all of those people knew about your private life and your movements? Yes, uncomfortable.

Although, that said, I would totally get it for a work phone. It does make meeting people at networking or company events much easier as you’re able to save your contacts according to the time you met them and not just on a first and last name basis. So for instance you can save a contact with a name and “Met him yesterday at the Apple event”. And searching for this contact will (supposedly – there are a few bugs to iron out) also be easy – simply search for people you met on [enter date] and viola!

Well, for now, while it sounds great, and it does have a lot of bigwigs backing the app, I shall wait and see how it turns out.

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