Meta’s NPE Team launches a new app, Task, for group organization and to-do’s – TechCrunch

Meta’s internal R&D group known as NPE Team just launched a new social app, Move, designed for both personal and group to-do lists. The app allows people, including individuals or groups organizing around a project, to create to-do lists and send out nudges and reminders for items that still need to be completed. However, unlike traditional to-do apps, Move gamifies the experience by allowing users to earn points for tasks that are completed which in turn allows them to customize an alpaca avatar with accessories like hats, clothing, sunglasses, and more.

The idea, apparently, is to encourage group participation, as the avatar’s customization allows users to see which group members are the most productive. That is, if your avatar has no accessories, then it’s clear you haven’t participated in the group’s project yet. This could serve as a subtle form of social pressure to get more involved.

Meta confirmed Move is still a small, early test from the company’s New Product Experimentation (NPE) team which it imagines could be used for things like community initiatives or class projects. It sees the app as a sort of “social tasking” tool, which makes a group’s to-do’s both easier to access and more transparent. Ahead of the launch, the app was tested with a small group of community organizers for early feedback.

The company suggests Move could be used for student group projects, sorority or fraternity projects, roommate to-do lists, neighborhood groups, community projects, or even personal to-do lists or family chores.

Meta’s NPE Team has been shifting focus in recent months to take a more global focus, rather than trying to create the next new social experience. So far, Meta has invested in an A.I.-powered developer platform for building virtual characters, Inworld AI, and has been working on other non-social apps, like one that would help the formerly incarcerated re-enter society, and another for LGBTQ families who were on a journey to become parents. NPE’s change in strategy also included plans to invest in small, entrepreneurial teams, the company said.

Task’s launch seems to indicate the group hasn’t entirely given up on social projects, but we understand the app had been in development ahead of NPE’s shift in focus this past December.

The app is currently available on the Apple App Store in the U.S. as a free download. There are no in-app payments or subscriptions required. Meta says it will be looking to learn more from this initial release.

Additional reporting by Manish Singh

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