Vero is the latest entrant into the social media apps arena, introduced by business tycoon and tech entrepreneur Ayman Hariri. Within one week in February 2018, Vero went on to become the most downloaded app on Apple Store and Google Play store with nearly 150,000 users that increased to four million users by the end of the month.
The immense response and attention that Vero has attained recently have taken its founder Ayman Hariri by sheer surprise. The app received such frenzy followed by an announcement that stated that the first one million subscribers would receive free subscriptions for their entire life, leading to excessive downloads. Since the servers had not been expecting such a tremendous response, they crashed from overload earlier this year. The company has also yet to decide on a subscription fee that is to be levied on the users which would help in monetizing data and even the user’s behavior. Till then, all the new members apart from the first one million subscribers also get free subscriptions.
Ayman Hariri is a well-renowned persona, son of late Lebanese Prime Minister and founder of the construction company ‘Saudi Ogre’ Rafic Hariri. He is also the brother of current Lebanese P.M. Saad Hariri. Previously, Ayman Hariri was also the deputy CEO and deputy chairperson of ‘Saudi Ogre.’ He, later on, went on to transfer his shares in the name of his brother Saad Hariri to begin and focus on his own startup Vero.
Vero was developed in 2015, as an alternative to popular social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Vero is an ad-free and algorithm free application, which makes it an exception. Being ad-free and algorithm free, Vero does not interfere with the feed and content. Users can view content in the order they are posted. It also has no scope of resorting to data mining as it is devoid of advertisements and algorithms.
The Vero app has been developed keeping in mind how people act differently in real life and virtual life. To sign up to the app, users will have to add contacts who have also downloaded and registered on the app and can assign them labels such as ‘friends,’ ‘acquaintances’ and ‘close friends.’ The name will not be visible to the contacts thus keeping the privacy of the users intact. Vero also allows the users to decide whom they want to share with pictures, books or recommend movies to. The entire content of the app is user-centric based on recommendations given by users.
Though Vero has been registered in New York, the team is spread between countries like U.S, Russia, France, and Italy. The founders of the startup are working currently with an aim to maintain the newly found fame and broad appeal that Vero has recently bagged.