For those of you who are unaware of The Astonishing Tribe, or TAT, it is a software company that makes slick UI skins, among other things. Today, we are getting a glimpse of what they’ve been working on, and it is truly astonishing.
First up, there’s the Horizon Maps, which is a mash-up of 2D and 3D Maps. By holding the phone horizontal, you’d get the simple 2D maps layout that you’re used to, but bringing the phone up at an angle you can watch the 2D buildings slowly grow into 3D. This makes a seamless transition between 2D and 3D mapping, and it’s pretty idiot-proof – It’s basically a better implemented Street View for maps.
We can’t wait to see this thrown into a phone, but unfortunately, TAT doesn’t release its software to the users, as it licenses the software out to manufacturers and operators. This is why we have yet to see any of the great things we’ve previewed in a phone yet.
TAT didn’t stop there, it also brought us Horizon Contacts and I was already dismissing it before watching the video – I mean, what could anyone do to make your contacts more interesting? Apparently, a lot.
Horizon Contacts also implements the tilting of the phone using the accelerometer. If your phone is horizontal, you’ll get your standard looking contacts app, but, when tilted at an angle, contacts go 3D and appear in a stair-looking format showing the last form of interaction with the person including Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, and text messages. You can also filter the content you’d like to see from your contacts by tapping on the icons on top of the screen.
The Astonishing Tribe is doing some cool shit and it has an eye for design that rivals the best of the best out there. Too bad it will likely be a while before we see any of its software put on to a phone. We hope we’re wrong, but these things can take a long time. TAT, keep doing your thing.