Facebook's experimental Forecast app wants to crowdsource predictions on the future

Facebook's New Product Experimentation team launched a new iOS app on Tuesday that aims to use crowdsourcing to predict future events. The app, called Forecast, will let people ask questions and then use in-app points to make predictions.

To start, the NPE team said it's inviting professionals in the health, research and academic communities in the US and Canada to make predictions about the coronavirus pandemic and its impact.

The app is invite-only for now, but some predictions and discussions will be publicly available on the Forecast website. Among the questions you can find on the site so far: "Will the FDA approve a vaccine for COVID-19 by the end of March 2021?" and "Will 'Tiger King' on Netflix get a spinoff season?"

"People are increasingly searching for information to help them understand what the world might look like tomorrow, next month, and beyond," wrote NPE product lead Rebecca Kossnick in a blog post. "We believe that a community built around predictions is not only a good way to surface crowdsourced wisdom, but may also help to encourage healthier online conversations across a broad range of topics."

For those interested in becoming a forecaster, you can join the waitlist to access the Forecast Beta Testers Facebook group.

Last month Facebook's NPE team launched three other experiment apps: a voice call app called CatchUp, Venue, an app aimed at connecting fans and commentators during live events and a Tik-Tok inspired music-making app called Collab.