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The Village Green: Maplewood-Born WhoWeUse App Moves From Beta to Launch

The Village Green covered our launch as well:

“Remember those blue map pin signs that were popping up all over Maplewood two years ago?

Well, they’re coming back.

WhoWeUse, which debuted in beta locally back in fall 2014, has now launched as “the first social on demand app for local services.”

WhoWeUse is available in New Jersey on Apple’s iOS platform. An Android version is coming later this fall.

Starting today, people in New Jersey can use the WhoWeUse app to find and connect with “plumbers, painters, physicians and many other trusted local services, helping them to improve their quality of life and maintain their homes,” according to a release.

The aim is to help consumers find and hire the best local services through recommendations from friends and neighbors.

John Garbarino

“WhoWeUse melds on-demand and social networking to create a unique experience centered on service requests and recommendations from your friends and neighbors,” said co-founder and CEO — and long-time Maplewood resident — John Garbarino.”

Maplewood Patch: Maplewood Dads Launch WhoWeUse App For Local Services

Maplewood Patch covered our launch:

“A group of suburban New Jersey dads – including two Maplewood residents – are launching what they’re billing as “the first social on demand app for local services.”

According to a company news release, the app is called “WhoWeUse” and “helps consumers find and hire the best local services they need through recommendations from their friends and neighbors.” Using the app, suburban New Jersey residents can connect with local services including plumbers, painters and physicians.

How is the app different from other services such as Angie’s List, Nextdoor and Thumbtack?

“Unlike Angie’s List, recommendation data, not ads, drives what a user sees,” the company news release states. “Unlike Nextdoor, you are not bound by the boundaries of your neighborhood for recommendations, but rather you can follow people you know from outside your neighborhood and we connect you to the businesses as needed. And unlike Thumbtack, services are socially vetted and we connect users with the best local businesses, not the ones that are most in need of customers.”

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WhoWeUse Launches the World’s First Social On Demand App for Local Services Beginning in New Jersey

Successful Public Beta Helps Close Pre-Seed Investor Round from Top Silicon Valley and New York Tech Investors – App Redesign Features Modern, Mobile-First, User-Friendly Interface Connecting Users with Quality Local Services

Maplewood, NJ – September 19, 2016 — WhoWeUse, the first social on demand app for local services, announced today availability in New Jersey of its free mobile app that helps consumers find and hire the best local services they need through recommendations from their friends and neighbors. Starting today, people in New Jersey can take advantage of this new service to find and connect with plumbers, painters, physicians and many other trusted local services, helping them to improve their quality of life and maintain their homes.

“WhoWeUse melds on-demand and social networking to create a unique experience centered on service requests and recommendations from your friends and neighbors,” said co-founder and CEO John Garbarino.

After a user requests a service, WhoWeUse connects them immediately with a list of the most recommended services across their social network for the requested category, while also allowing their friends to respond to the request. Users can also choose to be contacted directly by the most recommended services (without giving up their contact info) to get quotes or more information. “We help people to quickly make a well-informed decision and fix their problem, instead of getting recommendations from strangers,” said CTO and co-founder Pete Clark.

Although WhoWeUse will initially focus its marketing efforts on its home suburban New Jersey region, the company is preparing for a wider national roll-out later this year in other major cities and their surrounding suburbs. WhoWeUse is available on Apple’s iOS platform now. An Android version is coming later this fall.

Following a simple registration, WhoWeUse members can upload and share approved local business contact information from their address books, allowing their friends and neighbors to easily see recommendations for the most popular services they use. Members can also add new services, as well as share reviews and photos from the experience. Unlike an email listserv, Facebook groups or other online groups, recommendations from friends and neighbors are organized by category, ranked by popularity and archived for easy, future reference.

“As suburban dads, we’re trying to solve a problem that we encounter in our everyday lives that has yet to be solved by existing solutions,” said co-founder and President Spencer Ante.

Local services are given access to an online dashboard that lets them engage, grow and monetize these social connections. In doing so, businesses can increase their app ranking and word-of-mouth opportunity, which WhoWeUse visualizes for the very first time. Businesses will be able to send current and prospective clients quotes for service requests, offers and thank you notes.

WhoWeUse recently completed a successful pilot program in the New Jersey suburbs where two of its co-founders are based. The first few thousand users of the app shared nearly 10,000 unique businesses, and entered hundreds of requests and recommendations. The public beta validated that WhoWeUse’s mobile-first technology allows people to easily share and organize word-of-mouth recommendations, while helping local businesses to optimize their best source of new business.

The company’s experienced team and pilot metrics helped WhoWeUse helped close a pre-seed investment round that was led by New York early stage investment firm Blue {Seed} Collective. The funds financed a redesign of the app’s user experience and design led by world-class designers Lesley Fleishman and Aleks Gryczon, who both hail from Work & Co.–the agency started by all former HUGE founders.

Local Boys Do Good

The Village Green, a news website focusing on the Maplewood-South Orange area in north central New Jersey, wrote up a nice profile of the company (“What the Heck is WhoWeUse?”), calling attention to our local roots and awesome pin drop signs popping up on lawns across town.

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“WhoWeUse is the brainchild of Maplewood resident John Garbarino, who founded the company with Pete Clark and Garbarino’s new neighbor Spencer Ante. Another Maplewood resident Felix Sockwell rounds out the team as Head of Identity and Design,” wrote writer Mary Mann.

Mashable Names WhoWeUse One of 5 “Can’t Miss Apps”

WhoWeUse got the week off to a smashing start.

Mashable, one of the Web’s most popular sites, named WhoWeUse one of “5 Can’t Miss Apps” in weekly roundup of its fav’ new & updated apps.

Other top apps include the Windows version of Flipboard, and a new app from the geniuses behind JibJab. It’s an honor to be included in the same company as those heavyweights.