Is there any space on kids’ homescreens for another public sharing application to poke in? Y Combinator backed Splish wants to truly have a splash at it () – with a super-short-form video and picture sharing app aimed at the under-25s. July The SF-based startup started bootstrapping out of their university dorm rooms last, experimenting with app ideas before buying goofy video loops to be their interpersonal sharing steed of preference. The Splish app pops content into video loops of between 1-5 secs.
Photos can be uploaded too but motion must be added in the form of an animated aftereffect of your choice. So basically nothing on Splish remains still. Their initial web product went up in March and they landed a location on YC’s program at the start of May – when in addition they released their iOS app. An Android app is pending, and they’ll be on the hunt for funding come YC demo day.
The gap in the public sharing market this young team reckons it’s noticed is sort of ‘anti-Instagram’ – offering a playful contrast to the photo sharing platform’s refined (and at times preening) performances. The theory is that sharing stuff on Splish is a bonding experience; part of an ongoing smartphone-enabled conversation between mates, rather than a selectively manicured photoshoot which also needs to be carefully packaged for public ‘gram consumption.
Splish does have a public give food to, though, so it’s not a pure messaging app – but the co-founders say the focus is friend group writing rather than open public grandstanding. “Splish is a public app for writing informal looping videos with good friends,” says Rehfeld, providing the team’s elevator pitch. “It came out of our very own experience, and we’re building for ourselves because we pointed out that how you socialize right now in real life is you do activities with friends and family.
You go directly to the beach, you go directly to the pub, the bowling alley. We’re working to bring this same type of experience online using Splish through picture and video. “When you use Instagram you really feel just like you’re taking a look at a magazine. It’s the shows of people’s lives just,” he provides.
“And so we’re trying to make a place where you’re getting to know your friends better and reaching new people as well. And on the other side, on Snapchat, you’re really writing interesting occasions of your lives but it’s not necessarily pushing the limitations or creating with friends and family.
It’s more just a communication messaging tool. And in addition that people will want to use Splish to capture and store fun times with friends because they can be checked out again later, having been conveniently packaged for GIF-style repeat lols. ’t do is strengthen relationships long-term or over time because the chats and the photos disappeared,” says Rehfeld. The theory is a content format to gives people “shared experience that lasts”, he provides.
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They’re also straight nudging users to get creative via a little gamification, adding a new feature (called Jams) that allows users prompt each other to produce a Splish in response to a specific content creation challenge. And filming real (playful) physical make pokes has evidently been an early thing on Splish. That’s the merry-go-round of sociable for ya. Being a reasonable march north of Splish’s target age-range, I have to confess the app’s loopy effects end up triggering something nearer to motion sickness/vertigo/puking up for me personally.
But words are my solid social currency of choice. Whereas Rehfeld argues the teenager-plus focus on for Splish is preferred with a smartphone in its hand, and allowing the tale find out by a zoom lens of what they’re up to or how they’re feeling. “We started with that niche first because there’s a population in that age range that really enjoys this creative challenge of expressing yourself in pretty intuitive ways, and they understand how to do that. And they’re quite excited about it,” he tells TechCrunch. As with other cultural video apps, vertical full display screen is the preferred Splish body – for a more “immersive experience” and, well, because that’s how the kids do it.