- Twitter-like microblogging app Koo has been launched by serial entrepreneur and noted angel investor Aprameya Radhakrishna
The Indian government’s blocking of 59 Chinese apps has given new wings to Prime Minister Narendra Modi ‘s drive for ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat,’ or self-reliant India. And this is now seen by many entrepreneurs as an opportunity to build social media and entertainment apps.
Twitter-like microblogging app Koo has been launched by serial entrepreneur and noted angel investor Aprameya Radhakrishna where users can post text and multimedia notifications. The app has been accumulating more than 100k downloads from the Google Play Store.
While it was not possible to ascertain the exact timeline for the launch of the app, it looks like it has been live on the Play Store for several months. Users may express an opinion about an article, or like and comment. Koo is Team Vokal’s second offering and is available in 11 local languages including Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, and Assamese.
The app doesn’t come in English.
The mission statement of the application sets the record straight on its action plan in India: “In India, nearly 1 billion people do not know English. Instead, they speak one of the 100s of languages in India. They get access to smartphones now and in their language, they will love the internet. Koo is an attempt to make the voice of these Indians heard”.
The user interface of Koo is simple and intuitive and is well suited to first-time internet users. The app seems to have been influenced by Facebook, but its navigation and usability are built to hold the user in the middle of the vernacular.
The app has seen a hockey stick curve in terms of downloads over the past five days, according to Radhakrishna. The frustration of Chinese apps and the blocking of 59 China-linked apps seems to have caused the spurt in downloads and usage.
Time to build our own desi social networks!
We already are Vokal for Local and now here's us introducing our second super exciting product – 'Koo' – Desi Microblogging 🙂
— Aprameya R (@aprameya) June 30, 2020
It is worth noting that Vokal, created by Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka, has not been able to expand in comparison with ShareChat, Pratilipi, and the ecosystem of the Bytedance app in India. Vokal has managed to obtain 1.4 million downloads between January and June of this year, according to Sensor Tower.
A user-generated content network, Vokal allows users to use voice or text to ask and answer questions. The platform aims at reaching out to a non-English speaking community in India and doing what Zhihu, China’s highly popular Q&A network, has achieved.