In a week full of news and announcements one that has managed to slip under the radar of most people is Google’s new service called Schemer, a Web site currently in invitation only beta dedicated to getting people sharing ideas and doing things. While this may seem a bit vague dig a little deeper and you discover that what it is in fact is a public idea, goal and objective sharing service. As it is linked to your Google+ account many people have instantly jumped and made an easy comparison to Facebook events. While I understand why, I feel this is too simple of a comparison to make.
Facebook events in their simplest form give users the ability to create and invite people to an event, key details being who, what, when and where. Schemer differs significantly to this in that it only focuses on the what and then leaves the rest up to you. For example a schemer idea could be “go for a bike ride”, you could then use this scheme or idea to organise a bike ride at a given time and place with your Google+ circles. This is where most people seem to get caught in comparing it to Facebook events.
Google Schemer Find Stuff To Do page.
Looking at it further, if I submit the scheme “clean out my inbox” you start to see the real potential of Schemer. This activity clearly doesn’t require attendees or a place and can be done at any time. This in itself is the beauty of Schemer. By submitting my scheme it will then be shared with publicly (or limited within circles) on the site as a potential idea for other people to do. When people complete the scheme they tick it off and talk about their experience in completing it and if they recommend the scheme to others.
The real opportunity here would be for businesses to get involved, submitting tasks (non-commercial) and then Google potentially evolving a complete or a new scheme into a form of virtual currency which you could then use for example to get a discount voucher for a store.
At only a few days old it is difficult to gauge how successful this will actually become, but given the deep pockets Google has to support it and the already positive buzz (for lack of a better word) being generated around it, I think that that it does have the potential to entice and interest people who would subsequently make a Google+ account that, without Schemer, they might otherwise not.