MAXHASH, the first app from design and developer studio HYPERHYPER, is the newest way to browse the internet. The app conglomerates hashtags from popular social media networks (so far just Instagram and Tumblr) to bring those tagged images onto a single smartphone screen. "Because tagging is so deliberate, MAXHASH is able to return visuals that reveal an immediate and honest reflection of any particular topic—at the moment, all in one place," explains Russell Armand, creative director and one of the founders at HYPERHYPER who originally envisioned the app.
This simple idea manifests in a just-as-simple user interface consisting of a plain search bar at the top and an infinite scroll of images. No unused white space, user names or comments clutter up the feed. If you want to learn the source of the image, tapping the image takes you to the specific blog post.
While the search bar itself doesn't offer suggestions, if you visit the MAXHASH website, you'll see real-time searches from people using the app, including your own. Instead of "telling" you what is popular, Armand wants MAXHASH to serve more as an ever-evolving, visual-based social glossary for hashtags.
Armand continues, "MAXHASH was originally conceived as a response to the hashtags now seen on every television show, commercial and social campaign. You'll find that most people (outside the tech industry) still don't understand what hashtags mean or why they're useful. And most people who see a hashtag in the wild really have no idea what to do with it or where to go. Our mission is to give clear meaning to hashtags and create the one place everyone knows to go."
MAXHASH trumps the more conventional Google Image Search in two areas—the app searches what people have just posted so the content is more relevant and up-to-the-minute, and MAXHASH sources from social media networks instead of websites, which results in more personal, stimulating visuals, allowing you to avoid those cringeworthy, outdated stock images.
While we've had fun searching general hashtags since downloading the app, we're excited to try out MAXHASH in a different context: Watching much-anticipated television shows and crossing paths with other fans during commercial breaks in a new, visual way.
Available for the iPhone or iPad, you can download MAXHASH for free from iTunes.
Images courtesy of HyperHyper, screenshots by Nara Shin