EUGENE, Ore. — A University of Oregon student made waves in the tech world, and he hasn’t even graduated yet. The 22-year-old senior says he came to a realization last November while he was bored in class. Now his idea is about to become reality.
Sean Thorne says while he was on Facebook and twitter, he noticed all the irrelevant posts on social media. So he drew up his idea of a useful and fun app. That’s when Hallspot was born.
“Our goal is to make college a better, more connected experience,” Thorne said.
Thorne is starting his senior year at the UO and is the founder and CEO of Hallspot.
“I was actually sitting in my marketing class, bored, and so I pulled out my phone. I went on Facebook and Twitter and what I thought was, ‘I’m a college student. What matters to me is my university campus and my college friends,’” Thorne said.
Thorne says after taking those two passions and gathering a team, they were able to put together Hallspot, which is exclusively for college students.
“I would say it’s a combination of a local Instagram for college students where they can post pictures of themselves without having to worry about their grandparents seeing them, just their fellow students as well as a social recommendation engine,” said Drew Bruce.
After receiving its first round of funding in April, Hallspot was able to hire on full-time help, consisting of both seasoned web professionals and recent grads. Both combine to make a product that Thorne feels contributes to its purpose.
“We’re students and recent graduates ourselves, and so we know college, we love college, we love everything about it. But having gone through it ourselves, we also see what’s wrong with college,” Thorne said.
“It’s a really young, enthusiastic culture, and as a result of us being so young, we make a lot of mistakes, but we don’t let it get us down,” Bruce said.
“Hallspot, our feature, takes you to the party as it’s happening in real time,” Thorne said.
Those using the app can only connect with other students at the same campus. Thorne says Hallspot will officially launch Friday, September 27 at UO first and then Oregon State University. He says also hopefully it will launch at the rest of the Pac-12 schools soon.