Last year little known social media network Ello made quite a bit of noise. The site that was created last March saw itself as a hipper alternative to major social sites like Facebook and Twitter because they didn’t include ads on the site and promised to not sell user’s information.The site quickly raised a few million dollars and for a brief — very brief — moment it appeared the site might be what people exhausted from typical social media sites were ready for.
That honeymoon ended quickly as the site’s barebones feature set made what was an aesthetic choice towards simplicity appear as if we collectively stepped back to 2005. But the site had a much simpler problem: Who needs a new social media site? The site doesn’t offer the instant pictorial fun of Snapchat; the voyeurism of Periscope; or really offer anything that Facebook, Twitter, and a dozen other sites haven’t already offered. Their hook was built on a vaguely revolution pose, which for a social media site was rightfully questioned for being disingenuous and pandering.
But since last fall Ello was remaining pretty quiet except for a few minor updates — they got shirts! — until last week when they finally released a much requested social app. We decided to play around and offer a few impressions.
The “Discover” Tab
On the far left of the app is the “Discover” page, where there will be new and exciting content to find.
The Notifications Tab
The constant reminder that none of your friends used Ello since that one fateful week in September.
The Main Feed
The main feed is divided into “Friends” and “Noise”, which could also be described as vast nothingness and random posts from people you’ve never met. They might’ve been onto something with the title “Friends” and “Noise.”
The Profile Tab
The profile page looks like Twitter’s which looks like Facebook’s, but there aren’t ads, so I guess this one is better.
The ‘Say Ello…’ Tab
This the “Post” page, where a friendly message prompts one by saying “One easy place to post text, images and gifs”. Finally!
The app appears very functional and responsive, but Facebook sans ads also appears to be a social media site without people. Post-apocalyptic, chill.