Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

How to Launch a New Photo App: Wait for iOS 7 Launch, Try to Get Featured. Then Hope.

memoir

Another new photo-sharing app? In 2013? Really?

Yup, really. But say this for the team behind Memoir, which is launching today: While sharing photos is a component of what their app does, it’s not solely a photo-sharing app. It’s more of a photo-storage and filing service, with ambitions to move someday beyond photos into other personal data.

Which is good, because it sure seems like the photo-sharing app space is full up, though people are still trying to prove otherwise.

Memoir was co-founded by Lee Hoffman and Angela Kim, and is a pivot out of Veri, a TechStars education startup they launched in 2011. They raised $1.2 million for that project from backers including BetaWorks and SV Angel, and used much of that to move into Memoir; they’re also finishing a new funding round.

You can get a sense of what they’re trying to do with Memoir in the video below, but if you want a very short sentence, it would be: TimeHop mashed up with Photo Stream.

More sentences: Memoir checks the metadata for pictures you have on your phone, plus those you upload to Facebook and other services (if you let it), and organizes them by date and location; it will also try to figure out who you were with when you took the photo. Then it stores all the images on its servers, and lets you access them whenever you want; it assumes your photos are private, and will only share them with friends if you ask.

The service is free now, and the company hopes to introduce a freemium model that will give you access to goodies like higher-resolution images, etc. One day, Hoffman and Kim can see Memoir storing and filing things that aren’t photos.

For now, they’re just hoping to pick up some momentum from today’s Apple’s iOS 7 launch.

They’ve held the launch of their app until this afternoon, with Apple’s encouragement, in the hope that they get featured in Apple’s App Store. There’s no guarantee that they’ll get that attention, and even if they do, a feature slot at the App Store is no guarantee of success.

But it sure would be nice to show up today, when lots of you are going to be spending lots of time there.

Introducing Memoir from Memoir on Vimeo.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald