If you were one of the small number of users of the Hobbi app who documented your personal projects and craft projects, you may feel hard done by. If you don’t know what it is, you are not alone. It was an experimental app, however Facebook recently decided it was time to shut it down. All users of the app have been notified via push notifications that the app will be no more from 10th July 2020. Users will be able to export their data up until that date, so all is not completely lost.
It was only launched earlier this year by the NPE team at Facebook, and therefore many have been curious as to why it already being removed. Creating short-form content all to do with personal projects was apparently just what the app and personal interest industries needed. This particular app wasn’t meant to be though. With barely 7,000 downloads from the US App Store, Hobbi was just not popular enough. It was assumed that during the lockdown months many more users would download it as they spent more time at home, and were able to spend more time on their hobbies – but that didn’t happen either.
Why use the Hobbi app?
It was seemingly the perfect app to organize the creative process, capture images and information of favourite hobbies and projects, as well as build albums into categories, and even share them with friends. The interface was an aesthetically pleasing design and it was possible to see projects and albums at a glance and then click into them further.
Some said it was a little like Pinterest but on a smaller, more personal scale and without the user engagement. The other difference was that instead of being for inspiration and gathering ideas, it was created as a way for users to organize and document their actual projects whether they be gardening, crafts, baking or cooking, for example.
Updating the projects overtime was one of the most valued features of the app. Those seeds planted in week one, then those same seeds now sprouting in week 3, and then still those same seedlings beginning to grow upwards in week 5? Yes, that’s just one example of a lengthy project that could be documented and organized in one album within the Hobbi app. Somewhat of a visual diary. The end result was a type of highlight reel which, if the user wanted to, could publish it externally for all to see.
Unfortunately, the app was somewhat “skeletal”. It was quite basic, and it was only possible to document one’s projects, not like or comment on others’ projects. It was not even an option to browse the projects of others – all part of the fun of apps like this! The tools within the app for documenting projects were also underdeveloped. Hobbi did not get the traction it needed to remain an openly available app, and Facebook’s Research and Development team made the decision to terminate it.