Product Hunt, which lets users upvote new software products a la Reddit, is debuting an iOS app.
Image: Mashable, Christina Ascani

If you like to keep close tabs on what Silicon Valley is up to, you probably know Product Hunt, the site that serves up a daily list of new software products and services, ranking them with Reddit-like upvotes.

Product Hunt now has a product of its own, an iOS app that brings an enhanced experience to iPhone users.

“People come to the site multiple times a day, but the mobile experience isn’t great right now,” says Ryan Hoover, Product Hunt founder. “We wanted to give people an easy way to browse what’s new when you’re on your way somewhere.”

The design of Product Hunt is pretty basic, but the app adds a few mobile conveniences. The “submit product” button is prominently in the top right of the main screen, you can easily switch to a view of the most recent submissions (as opposed to the most popular), and tapping on an entry brings up easy ways to share it.

Product Hunt for iOS

Product Hunt for iOS has an easy way to see items by popularity or how recently they were added.

Image: Mashable, Christina Ascani

There’s a tab for notifications, but Hoover says those won’t be active at launch. Although there’s no Android app, he says third parties in the Product Hunt community have been working on them ever since the site opened up its API earlier this month.

Product Hunt started last November as a mere email list and became a full-blown site after the Thanksgiving holiday. Since then it’s experienced healthy growth — a 70% increase in visitors every month since January, Hoover says. The products highlighted are feeling the boost, too: Hoover says sites at the top of the leaderboard have gotten spikes of up to 10,000 new visitors — impressive traffic for a budding startup.

Once the app is fully operational, Hoover says he has ambitions to take Product Hunt beyond just tech. However, he concedes the model won’t work for every traditional “vertical.”

“There needs to be an overlap without existing audience,” Hoover says. “If we started with fashion tomorrow, that would be difficult. We want to have product categories that people are passionate about. One example is video games. If you look at mobile gaming alone, there’s a need for a better way to curate those products.”

Product Hunt hasn’t quite had its “Secret” moment yet, but there’s no question it’s a go-to destination for the Silicon Valley startup crowd. Can the onetime side project become a full-blown destination? Getting into its readers’ pockets is probably a good first step.

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YouTube can be a platform for success, and perhaps no one (well, except maybe Justin Bieber) knows that better than actress Felicia Day. In April, Day launched Geek & Sundry, a multimedia company and premium YouTube channel dedicated to indie geek entertainment, and the sixth season of her web series The Guild will be released on Geek & Sundry soon, along with six new web shows.

Day’s been a staple on the web video scene for years, having co-starred in Joss Whedon’s Internet musical Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, which was ranked in the “Top 10 Best TV of 2008” by Time, Entertainment Weekly and People and won an Emmy in 2009. She also created and stars in the web series The Guild, which just finished its fifth season, partnered with Microsoft and Xbox Live. The Guild has won the YouTube, Yahoo, Streamy and SXSW Best Web Series Awards and was recently nominated for a PGA for best web series.

While shooting season six, Day let us follow her around to see what it’s like to be in her shoes. (Hint: It involves long days and a lot of caffeine.)

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