Arizona State University Launches First Private Geolocation App for Students, Powered by DoubleDutch

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ASU breaks ground in the geolocation arena by launching its own location-based social network.

ASU Online today became the first university to offer its students a private, mobile, location based social network.

Named by the students, in part after the school’s mascot, “spark” helps students share their location, earn points and badges for school-related achievements, and connect with other ASU students around the world.

"spark is one arm of our social networking efforts to further engage students with ASU and enrich their academic experience” said Sarah Krznarich, ASU Online’s Director of Student Engagement. “When your student body doesn't regularly connect with classmates on a physical campus, you have to be innovative, provide new ways for them to be a part of the university."

Central to spark is the concept of game mechanics to recognize real world achievements. The app will boast ASU specific badges such as “Devil’s Advocate,” which recognizes students who check in to study-friendly locations such as coffee shops, and the “Pitchfork Pride” badge for students who check in to watch ASU sporting events.

Another notable feature is spark’s emphasis on privacy and security - only people with an ASU email address may use the app.

The technology behind spark was developed by San Francisco based geolocation company DoubleDutch (http://www.doubledutch.me).

“We really love the idea of a university specific geolocation app built by ASU Online for ASU Online,” said DoubleDutch CEO Lawrence Coburn. “We applaud the Arizona State University team for their innovation in bringing this market.”

The spark iPhone app is available to ASU students in iTunes. An HTML5 version of the app that will work on any mobile device with a modern browser will be available soon.

About DoubleDutch
Based in San Francisco, DoubleDutch (http://www.doubledutch.me) helps companies build branded geolocation applications for their communities, complete with game mechanics. From city guides, to conferences, to universities, and to the enterprise, DoubleDutch is the only geolocation platform built from ground up for brands and companies. DoubleDutch launched in March, 2010 at the SXSW Interactive Festival.

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LAWRENCE COBURN
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