Photosharing app Poparazzi launched publicly on Monday and instantly skyrocketed to the top of Apple’s App Store. If you’ve been on Twitter recently, you likely saw people in the startup/VC world talking about it.
If you’re scrambling to catch up and download Poparazzi, here’s what you need to know about the buzzy new social app.
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What is Poparazzi?
Poparazzi is a photo-sharing app that encourages users to take and share photos of their friends. There’s no front-facing camera, so selfies aren’t a thing. Instead, users snap photos of their friends and tag them, mimicking a paparazzi shot.
A user’s profile is made up of photos taken by their friends. Users also have the ability to restrict who can take photos of them and which photos show up on their profile.
“We built Poparazzi to take away the pressure to be perfect,” the company wrote in a Medium post announcing its launch. “We did this by not allowing you to post photos of yourself, putting the emphasis where it should’ve been all along: on the people you’re with. On Poparazzi, you are your friend’s paparazzi, and they are yours.”
In a way, Poparazzi is similar to Dispo in that both promote candid images with a sharing element. Both are less about fine-tuning for Instagram and more about capturing a moment as it is.
Dispo, co-founded by popular YouTuber David Dobrik, was the buzzy new photo sharing app a few months ago when it raised a $20 million Series A led by Spark Capital in February. The next month, however, the app was caught up in controversy after allegations of rape were made against one of Dobrik’s former associates. Spark Capital then said it would cut ties with the company.
Poparazzi’s public launch comes as more people are receiving their COVID-19 vaccines and society begins to re-open. Poparazzi could be “the perfect app for ‘hot vax summer,’ according to SignalFire principal investor and head of content Josh Constine.
“The app could come to characterize the post-pandemic reunion with friends the way Clubhouse embodied the physical isolation from friends at the start of lockdown last year,” Constine wrote in a blog post yesterday.
Social media companies raising money
Poparazzi developer TTYL, which is based in Marina Del Rey, California, raised $2 million in funding from investment firm Floodgate in 2018, per Crunchbase. TTYL, which was founded by Alex Ma and Austen Ma, has released other social apps, including the app TTYL.
Poparazzi is among a number of new social media startups to quickly gain popularity in the past year, including Dispo and audio-based social app Clubhouse, which has raised $110 million to date led by Andreessen Horowitz.
Photo sharing companies alone have raised $86 million in funding this year, and raised more than $129 million in funding last year, according to Crunchbase data. Social media companies in general raised more than $4 billion in funding last year, and have raised nearly $1.8 billion in funding so far this year.
Illustration: Li-Anne Dias
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