The app’s basic functionality is pretty straightforward. You can create lists of movies that you’ve watched (rating them between 0 and 5 stars) and that you want to watch. You can also browse lists of highly rated or popular movies in the app, as well as lists created by other users. (You can follow those users, too.) The ultimate goal, Cameron said, is to help users “organize your movie library” (library might not exactly be the right word for it, since it’s not necessarily a list of movies that you own — but I think it conveys the basic idea) and find new titles to watch.
A lot of this functionality is already available in other services. Netflix is famous for its algorithmically driven movie recommendations, and another one of my mainstays, IMDb, also has user ratings and a “watchlist” feature. But in those cases, those features are mixed in with a larger service, whereas Limelight has pared things down and is all about ratings and recommendations.
Plus, there’s a nice social component — something that Netflix, for one, is still struggling with. Similar to Amazon-acquired social reading service Goodreads, seeing your friends’ history in Limelight can be useful for finding new movies, and can also just be amusing. For example, I was appalled to discover that Verge writer Ellis Hamburger gave a five-star rating to Armageddon.
The app was built by 9:42AM, which is basically the team of Cameron and designer Marcelo Marfil. Cameron said the company’s goal is to “build simple products that work beautifully and have a defined need.” He described 9:42 (which is named after the exact time when Steve Jobs announced the iPhone) as a side project until he starts his next company. But he said this doesn’t mean he isn’t serious about these apps: “Making apps is a huge passion for me, so it’s a good way to keep creative before I start the next thing.”
As for Everyme, the startup doesn’t seem to have gotten much buzz since its big launch last year, and it launched a new service called Origami in the fall. (Everyme co-founder Vibhu Norby recently published a blog post recommending that startups avoid the big launch and instead focus on building a community, which is what he said he’s doing with Origami.) Cameron told me that he left because he was looking for a new challenge.
“I had been working on practically the same product for nearly three years, so it was time for a change up,” he said.