Iceland’s “anti-incest” app & the power of good app ideas

Here are Waracle we often talk about good app design (well, we say often, we know it’s more like all time). It’s one of the major keys in developing a successful app on the market after all. But to design an app you need to have an idea of what that app is going to do or be. After all, no creative thing would exist without the spark that sets it off in the first place.

What creates that spark? Well for apps usually it’s finding a need for something useful that isn’t there, but probably should be. There are a lot of apps out there trying to solve the same problems (travel times, weather etc), but app developers in Iceland have certainly taken the biscuit for the most original app idea we’ve heard of in a while.

Essentially, Iceland has such a small population and long history (320,000) that young people looking to hook up can never be quite sure if the person they are wanting to be with isn’t related to them in some way. Apparently accidental sex with unknown first cousins isn’t that unusual in Iceland.

So what did the Icelandic app dev team do? Made an app that has a direct link to an online registry 720,000 people who were born in the country in the recent-ish past that partners can check before they start removing any clothes.

Their slogan is “Bump the app before you bump in bed” and the app is designed to talk to the same app on another phone and compare the user’s personal data to find out just how related they actually are. Of course, that may not stop them from carrying on, but they at least can’t claim ignorant bliss.

As one user review on the Play store said:

“If I would have had this app last year I probably wouldn’t have gone home with my cousin.”

So, sucks to be them, but the fact remains that the idea is quite ingenious. And it is likely to be an app that is very popular with the younger generations, as there are probably many stories like the one on the Play store.

Like we said at the beginning of the blog, good apps are partially good design, but it always helps to have a solid idea to work off of. So instead of just trying to copy others and make apps that already exist, try to find problems that haven’t been solved yet, or are unique to your country or area. And if that isn’t an option, or you’re really set on an idea that’s already been done, get those planning hats on and work out how you can make your app the one that’s going to define that little piece of appdom, rather than it being a tagalong.


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