Late last year, Betaworks quietly acquired mobile messaging service Vibe. “Betaworks never announced the deal, but I’ve been able to confirm it,” TechCrunch editor Erick Schonfeld writes. “The deal was likely in the low six figures, with betaworks now owning a majority of Vibe.” Popular among members of the Occupy Wall Street movement, Vibe lets users post messages, photos, and videos within a geo-fenced radius.
The iPhone app lets users post everything from a “whisper” -- which is only “visible” to people within 165 feet -- to a “bellow,” which is “visible” worldwide. Messages can also be set to expire, while users can post with a pseudonym or link the app to their Twitter account. Other users can respond to create a threaded conversation, TechCrunch notes. “The Vibe app is intriguing,” it admits. “Local, pseudonymous communications on your mobile device can be very compelling in the right contexts.”
Yet, the Vibe app still needs work, according to TechCrunch. “For one thing, if you want to see all the ‘vibes’ pinned to a map, you have to download a separate app also created by Sayed called AskLocal.” Bigger picture, TechCrunch says the deal is representative of a return to popularity of pseudonyms in social networks.