Is Pheed just another new social media network to add to the seemingly ever growing list, or is the new social sharing platform really about to give Facebook and Twitter a run for their money? That’s the question social media commentators have been asking all week a Pheed takes over the number one spot as the most downloaded free social media app in iTunes, and holds the position for over a week.
Craig Kannally blogged on The Huffington Post last week, that the rise of Pheed was thanks largely to teens adopting the new service in droves, and according to Adland news, most of the new Pheed enthusiasts are French, as well as “the usual famous-for-fame’s sake celebrities.”
Pheed, a Los Angeles based operation, was launched last October, with the catchphrase “A New Way to Express Yourself.” On the surface, Pheed is very much like Facebook in that users sign up to share status updates and media files with their followers. Unlike Facebook, Pheed lets you post audio files including voice recordings, and allows for videos up to four hours long.
“We’ve been building stuff like this for almost 10 years. Building items that scale, whether it’s social or otherwise, we’ve been doing this for a long time. We’re fans of this space. Because we’re tech guys, we just started building stuff like Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, etc. out for the Chinese market. In China, there’s no YouTube, no Facebook, no Twitter. So there’s always local counterparts, and usually the Chinese market kind of looks at what the West is doing and creates something China-style. S0 the concept of Pheed was from bouncing around ideas like ‘oh I really love that filtering,’ for example, that’s on Tumblr. ‘Why don’t they do that on Twitter?’ Or ‘I love Soundshare’ – why don’t they do more stuff like that?’ We just looked at everything as users, and what we’re missing, and what we’d like to have in a product.”
Pheed is free to use but members do have the option to put a price on their content through either a subscription from $1.99 to $34.99 a month, or a pay-per-view system, with Pheed taking a cut of the earnings. Users retain full ownership of their posted content, this seems to be a feature the network is emphasizing.
“…YOU ARE THE SOLE OWNER AND CURATOR OF YOUR MATERIALS. WE WILL NOT SELL, LICENSE, DISTRIBUTE, COPY, MODIFY, DISPLAY, TRANSMIT, PUBLISH, EDIT, ADAPT, CREATE DERIVATIVE WORKS FROM, OR OTHERWISE MAKE UNAUTHORIZED USE OF YOUR MATERIALS.”
The Pheed iOS app has maintained a 4.5 star rating from more than 1500 reviews which, as Kannally notes, puts it ahead of Twitter’s review ratings. As iTunes app downloads continue to rise, Pheed is definitely pegged as a social media network to watch and may very well be the next big social network competitor.