What, another social media platform?
Vero is the latest popular kid at the school of social media. Being described as the new Instagram, a "Facebook killer" and currently at the time of writing is the number one free app in the Apple App Store. This social media platform has actually been around since 2015, when it was launched by Ayman Hariri, billionaire business man and son of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
A sudden surge in interest has been attributed to the Cosplay community on Instagram getting fed up with the limitations of algorithms and making a united push to build audiences on Vero. As for why it has become so popular just check out Vero's manifesto. To put it simply, they are promising users a platform to connect with each other that is algorithm and ad free.
How will they make their money then?
An annual subscription model will be introduced soon and also a business model where Vero receives a commission on sales made through the platform.
What are the pros and cons?
The positives about this new platform are that Vero allows you to have more control over who sees your posts. They can be close friends, friends, acquaintance or followers.
Your friends list is categorised by you when you accept connections and individuals don't know what group you've allocated them in. Unless they are my friends who are reading this and looking at my screenshot, ahem. I love you all equally, this isn't MySpace with it's top 8 friends ranking (thank goodness). Let's move on shall we...
Another thing on Vero that people are getting excited about is their chronological newsfeed. This is what actually attracted me to sign up. The thought brings me sheer joy that I won't have snow day posts appearing three days later when we are in an abnormal spring heatwave here in the UK.
A few things to note with the app at the moment are that due to the increase in demand the servers are slow and there are glitches. I keep experiencing a server time out scenario where it takes a day of retrying attempts to post a link or photo. Not speedy but I'm happy to wait it out and see how things are once the dust has settled. One thing I have found to be a bit of a niggle is when it comes to getting followers or finding friends, there's no quick link straight to their profile. So far it's a case of a manual name search and spreading the word about being on there, well I'm just sharing a screenshot of my bio which shows more info than the app's "Invite Contacts" sharing card.
How is it standing apart from Facebook, Instagram and co?
Certain similarities can be seen between Vero and other social media platforms. It has friends and followers, direct messaging known as chats, you can post a range of content (such as photos, links, plain text and recommendations), and finally you can view some very nice photos from users in a gallery style layout.
The differences, well not much to be honest. There's no events section, so whether that's on the cards for a future development who knows. It mainly seems to rebel against the social media app norm via aesthetics. It's all very dark and edgy when you open the app. No stark white walls or light backgrounds when it comes to Vero.
One very notable downside to the app is that users are commenting (on other social media platforms - oh the irony!) about how it's not that easy to leave, or at the very least not that user friendly to do so. In order to leave the platform you have to request it by going to your profile, tapping the question mark symbol, looking on the drop down menu called "who would you like to contact?" and then select "delete my account". So basically it appears you have to seek permission to have your account deleted and leave the platform.
So is it worth it?
As with any trend only time will tell if Vero can stick it out to rival the likes (pun intended) of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. At the time of writing there's the offer of free membership for the first million subscribers which is a good incentive. It's often good to be an early adopter but with Vero it comes with the need for patience whilst the developers catch up to meet the overwhelming demand.
If you don't have the time for another social platform then hold tight and keep watching this space. I'll give Vero a chance and report back on my findings in a couple of weeks.
Are you on Vero? Do you think it is just a passing trend? Let me know your thoughts below and if you're on the platform be sure to look me up!