The number one app in Apple’s App Store this month isn’t Instagram, TikTok, or BeReal. It’s
called “Gas” and it’s the hottest app among high schoolers.
The best way to describe this app to parents is that it’s similar to how we passed around “slam
books” in high school. Remember those?
They were spiral notebooks with a series of questions or polls on each page. Students passed
them around and put a classmate’s name on each question. “Gas” is like that, except it is only
nice questions. In case you didn’t know, Gas in teenage slang means making someone happy, such as “gassing someone up”. That’s the goal of this app with the tagline “see who likes you”.
Here’s how it works: When a user creates an account they allow the app to see their location so they can select their school and then add classmates who also use the app. It also requires users to give access to their list of contacts.
Every hour users are given a series of questions such as “who can fake it til they make it?”, “Always picks dare in Truth-or-Dare”, and messages such as “what’s cookin’ good lookin’.” When a student is selected, they get a notification but no name of the person who voted for them.
This is where Gas earns revenue, charging users to see who voted for them. For a $
5-a-week subscription, you can see 2 name reveals per week which is pretty steep. The price
goes up to $6.99 after an initial 30% discount.
What do parents need to know? Your high school student is, or will soon be using the Gas app. It’s that popular and the popularity is growing. All of the questions are positive and of the 100 or so I’ve seen, none can be taken in a bad way. Users cannot send private messages or even comment publicly on who has been chosen.
Downside: Anyone can create an account for any high school and see other students who use the app. There is no verification that someone is who they say they are. I signed up for two accounts using fake names and successfully signed up for two high school communities.
The app gathers your location, contacts, cellphone number, and name. Even though it launched in just 12 states 2 months ago, it’s the hottest app among high school students and #1 in Apple’s App Store.