Nobody wants to throw away their child’s artwork, but when crayon drawings accumulate, finding a way to store the piles of 8.5″ x 11″s can be difficult.
After dealing with this problem first-hand, Offir Gutelzon, who sold his last company to Getty Images for $20 million two years ago, has launched new iOS app called Keepy that aims to be an intergenerational social platform and digital refrigerator door for children’s schoolwork, art, and keepsakes.
On Keepy, parents can snap a photo of their son’s macaroni masterpiece, frame it, and add a voiceover or video. Relatives who subscribe to their feed can then add video comments, building a family conversation and, over time, an interactive scrapbook.
Because a photo of a report card doesn’t carry the same memory as the original, the addition of video is meant to put some of that emotional weight back into digital storage.
“I talked to parents and found out that when you take a photo, it doesn’t have enough emotional feeling around it because the picture is blurry or unframed, or it’s just a piece of paper on the table,” Gutelzon said. “What we’re doing is taking tech into one place to build their family emotional timeline.”
Gutelzon said that Keepy is still finalizing its seed round and will announce it in 4-6 weeks, although this SEC filing puts it at about $1 million.
The first 50 Keepies come free with the download, and parents can get more with a one time in-app fee, or by sharing Keepy with their friends. That also comes with lifetime storage on Keepy’s cloud, which can then be linked to a Dropbox account.
Keepy is rolling out what may be the best aspect of its platform in the coming months: the addition of video, rather than photo, as alternate type of post. Showing family videos has become something of a free-for-all since camcorders were replaced with smartphones, and Keepy could be a helpful catalogue and private forum for that.
The company will also be releasing an app for Android, adding more language options to its system, and building a network of international parent ambassadors to spread the word. There is also potential to build out Keepy as a platform for school fundraisers, Gutelzon said, which would enable it to share revenue with schools.
A number of family apps like RedRover and Life360 focus on GPS location, while WhatsApp and Tango can keep family members in communication. Gutelzon said that Keepy isn’t trying to replicate another communication channel, but rather become a growing memory box for families.
“Keeping it digital lets you keep more and document more,” Gutelzon said. “You can still keep the original piece, and I do as well, but when you get 20 or 30 pieces of offline content every week, or you have boxes and boxes, at some point you have to look back and ask what you’re going to do.”