Amidst the current ephemeral messaging craze, one company is actually all about documenting people’s social media history for ever and ever.
Timehop, an app that lets people see what they were up to on their social media accounts on that day in previous years, is not only charging on despite the Snapchat et al. trend, but it’s also announcing that it’s picked a new $10 million in funding to keep growing.
“We see ourselves as the place where your digital history can be written,” Timehop co-founder and chief executive Jonathan Wegener said in an interview with VentureBeat.
Although Timehop was first a fun way for people to “travel back in time” to see what they posted on Facebook or Twitter, for example, on that same day in previous years, the company is working to take the app to new heights. Along with Google+, fuller iPhone photostream integration, and other new channels, Timehop is planning to add in the near future, it’s also been experimenting with diary-like features, Wegener said.
However, the company will be using the new funding to expand its product teams, mostly in order to support its current core technology, with new features and experiments being a lower priority.
So what about the current love affair Millennials (such a broad definition) are having with Snapchat and all things disappearing?
“I think that there’s room for both,” said Wegener.
With Timehop’s current engagement — 3 million people check it every day, more than USA Today and the New York Times’ numbers — Wegener says that people still care about documenting their lives and having those records.
And despite all the talk about teens fleeing Facebook in favor of Snapchat to escape their parents and a possible digital trail that will later haunt them, I agree with Weneger. Today’s 13 year-olds might not be as enthusiastic about Facebook as we were at their age, but my peers and I (roughly people currently 20 to 30 years old) started documenting our social lives years ago on Facebook, and revisiting that history is surely something appealing to us. I, for example, have several friends who regularly check Timehop to reminisce.
Although Wegener wouldn’t share specific user numbers, he did say that about 80 percent of Timehop users are female, most of its users are in high school or college, and are largely located in the U.S. and the UK (Wegener has no idea why it’s so popular in the UK). He also said that the company sees a spike in usage on Thursdays, probably driven by the “throwback Thursday” trend, and that despite the app having an easy to use social sharing button, a lot of people still take screenshots of their Timehops to share them with others.
Shasta Ventures led this current round, with additional participation from Spark Capital, OATV, and Randi Zuckerberg. Shasta Ventures partner Sean Flynn will be joining Timehop’s board.
Timehop is available on iOS and Android.
Timehop came out of Foursquare’s first hackathon in February 2011, created by Jonathan Wegener and Benny Wong. The company is based in New York City and previously raised $1.1 million in seed funding and participated in the Techstars NYC accelerator program.
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