Watch out B-school, there’s a burgeoning entrepreneur on campus.
Tech-obsessed freshman Virginia Myers recently launched an app, Rove, that offers an exciting new way of discovering one’s local area. Her app was released on March 6 and is garnering attention from Richmond students.
The goal of Rove, which means to travel without a destination, is to provide users the opportunity to further engage in their communities. Users can post photos of restaurants they like and activities they enjoy, while catching a glimpse into what others in their area do for fun.
“I use it to see what is going on around me both at UR and in the Richmond community," sophomore Katie Tanner said. "It has everything from restaurant and meal ideas to game updates and fun photos.”
Like Yik Yak, Rove displays content posted within a mile radius of the user, sending localized content to whoever is seeking inspiration. There is no following or friending, but users can vote on whether a post is “hot” or “not.” The app targets people, particularly college students, living or traveling in cities.
Myers said she began working on the app with her business partner, Alex Britton, in May 2014, though she has always had a fascination with technology.
“When I was little, I had a notebook where I would write down ideas of inventions that I wanted to make someday, so during my senior project when (Britton) asked, ‘Do you want to do something?’ I totally took up the opportunity,” Myers said.
Britton and Myers were interested in learning more about Objective-C, the programming language used by Apple, so they decided to develop an iPhone app as their final high school project.
Myers and Britton designed the app’s visuals using Photoshop and Pixelmator, and with later help from investors and an Indian-based company named Mobiers, Rove was created.
“We want to find some sort of venture capital source to bring in more money to increase our budget so that we can expand the app and its functions,” Myers said. “As of right now, we’re just trying to get more users and more people aware of the app and really posting a lot of content.”
Rove is spreading through college-specific pages.
“My partner goes to New York University, so we’re trying to make NYU and Richmond the big hubs of this app, so hopefully it will grow in these two schools and then more schools will want a page.”
Looking ahead, Myers is excited to see what heights Rove will achieve, and she encourages anyone wanting to pursue their own entrepreneurial endeavor to do so.
“Definitely look and see where in the market you can find something that isn’t there, where there’s a blank space that can be filled, and just talk to people, research, and go for it," Myers said. "Be bold. I never thought a year ago that I would have developed an iPhone app.”
Contact reporter Kayla Solsbak at firstname.lastname@example.org.