NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - If you've ever walked out of the subway and had no idea which way to go, a new app could solve your problem. Allison McGuire, the creator of Walc, says the idea came from her own terrible sense of direction and the fact that she walks all the time. So she decided to make technology that would help people navigate with confidence and ease.
In October of 2015, she launched the app Walc to help people find their way on foot. Walc gives you directions based on what you see. Instead of saying "head north or head south" the app guides you with landmarks and local business. McGuire says that doesn't exist anywhere.
She built the app here in New York City, but you can use it around the world. Walc is available for iPhone and Android in the U.S. McGuire says some people have even used Walc abroad.
So how does it work? Put in your destination and you're on your way. If there's a landmark nearby, the app will ask if you can see it. If you do, say yes, if you don't, say no, and Walc will suggest another one. From there, the app guides you towards that landmark. For example: make a right at CVS, make a left at McDonald's.
Walc is free and it's also hands-free, so you won't be walking around with your head buried in your phone. McGuire says they've developed a pocket mode so you can put your phone in your pocket once you've put in your destination. Put your headphones in, or have Walc speak directly to you from your phone, and start walking.
Walc started with McGuire, but it's now a four-person team based out of WeWork Fulton Center in downtown Manhattan. The team is fundraising. McGuire originally raised $100,000 to get the app off the ground two years ago. Right now, the company in the middle of its seed round. It already has more than $500,000.
McGuire says Walc is already bringing in revenue. How? Utility advertising is one way. You may choose to click on some of the logos or landmarks Walc shows you to get special offers.
McGuire says she is well aware that people hate annoying banner advertising, so you'll never see that on her app. She is also looking to license Walc so it can be plugged into other technologies.
The vision is to use Walc to build a more walkable world.