Addappt, released in 2012 as an application to keep your contacts up to date, relaunched this morning with a new focus on messaging. Its re-designed iOS app still has a focus on your address book — it forms the locus of your social data — but Addappt now includes a feature the company calls ‘Tapp.’
Tapp is a 100 character text and emoji tool that allows you to send notes to individuals, or groups. The notes are ephemeral, and are not stored by Addappt itself. The service also has a number of useful tools, like tracking what sort of iconography you recently used so that you can quickly ping your groups.
To show me how it worked, Addappt CEO Mrinal Desai added me to his morning group on the app, and since then I’ve received peppy updates each morning from the executive. Given that I can only reply to him, I’ve sent him a stream of poop emojis in return.
If the new Addappt sounds a bit like a souped-up version of Twitter’s DM system, that’s not an accident. Desai made that comparison explicitly to TechCrunch:
“We see tapp a little like Twitter’s DM since it is short, 100 characters, and private but then also very different since there is no history in the app and none of it is ever stored on our servers. Furthermore, it exists in a private environment being integrated into an address book”
There is an ‘x factor’ to apps of this sort. There is only so much room in the market, which is why we’ve seen companies win the OTT messaging space on a roughly per-country basis. The markets in South Korea, Japan, and so forth exhibit similarities of this sort. And so I think that we’ll see what Addappt put together either quickly grow, or continue what the company described to TechCrunch as slow, but steady growth. Desai declined to share hard usage figures.
But I will say the new Addappt is by far the most useful version of the app I’ve tested. At issue is whether it is good enough to draw enough users to itself so that it can start to see positive, and not frictious impacts of network effects.
I’ll check back in with the company in a few months to see how many news users the updates brings it.
For kicks, here’s a chat I had with the company from earlier this year: