San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Tap into TapTap Trivia: The new social trivia app for college students

In its developmental stage, this platform allows students to connect with their community and earn rewards
Tap Tap Live’s website. Photo Courtesy of Tap Tap Live

TapTap Trivia is a new app that allows college students to compete against each other for money. Additionally, the app’s main focus is to create a space that gives players a chance to connect in the present moment, aiming to bring back a sense of community that has been lost on other social media apps.  

Gordon Sun, the founder and CEO, created the app as a way to strengthen bonds among friends. 

Sun was inspired by apps like HQ Trivia Crack and Snapchat. He particularly liked Snapchat’s lack of feed and messaging format. Sun wanted to create an app that forms communities and brings people together for a moment each day.

“I realized that social media had become full of strangers and celebrities,” Sun said. “I thought to myself, why is social media not about your friends anymore?”

The app launched in September 2023 and started exclusively for University of Southern California students. In October, the app moved to the University of California, Los Angeles with a school-versus-school competition between the two schools. Afterward, it became accessible to all United States colleges and universities.

The company chose to gear the game toward college students for the sense of community that college life brings. 

“There is something special about having thousands of your peers in a dense environment,” Sun said. 

The app builds that feeling with daily trivia broadcasts. The game goes live every day at 5 p.m. in which users get a notification on their phones, signaling that it is time to play. 

Photo Courtesy of Tap Tap Live

Upon clicking the notification or opening up the app, they are directed to a live broadcast counting down the seconds to the launch of the live game for the day. 

When the game begins, a video introduction plays outlining what is going on for the app that week. And then it begins. Players answer a series of 12 trivia questions on a range of themed topics such as sports, general, famous icons and more. 

Another way the app aims to create a community is with its many Instagram accounts. Each school has its own page where students from the school are featured as the “Player of The Week.”

“My favorite part of the game is how interactive it is,” said Danielle Salling, a San Diego State junior who has been featured on the Instagram page. 

The questions are created by James Oldenburg, who serves as the Head of Operations and Growth for TapTap Live. Oldenburg writes the game every day with the help of ChatGPT. The artificial intelligence software builds the foundation of the questions, and Oldenburg edits them while also including his own custom questions. 

For each game, there is a “bounty” or a prize for answering all the questions correctly. The bounty for the games is around $200. The money is split evenly between how many winners there are.

Upon winning the game, winners immediately get a text with a link that redirects them to a page on how to redeem the money. The game offers multiple ways to claim the prize, such as on Venmo, PayPal or even the option to donate the money to charity. 

“Our goal is to give back to our users. The money can help students who may not be particularly affluent yet,” Sun said. 

One of the greater mysteries about the app is where the money comes from. The company gets the prize money from venture capitalists and angel investors from companies like Discord, Uber and Feastibles. 

“I have won a total of six games,” Salling said. “My biggest prize was about $6.”

The trivia app is still in its early stages of development, and the company will be adding to it. To start, they hope to open up the app to alumni with the intent of still keeping the game exclusive to present and former college students. 

There are a few features on the app that have yet to be developed, such as the “Challenge Me” button that will eventually allow players to challenge each other one-on-one. 

In the months to come, the company will continue to improve the app and its user experience. 

“This is just step one for us,” Sun said.