There is a growing category of apps that fall under the heading, Apps to save us from ourselves. There are messaging apps that delay the sending of text messages and apps and hardware that measure the amount of alcohol on your breath.
Flashgap enters this category – probably in time for some – to stop embarrassing party photos from making the rounds before you’ve had a chance to sober up and consider who will get to see your fun and foolishness.
The time-delay photo-sharing app was inspired by the movie The Hangover, where a group of friends gather for a wild bachelor party, lose the groom and have to retrace their steps to remember what happened. A clue or two comes when they realize pictures from the party they could not remember surface online.
But Flashgap is also inspired by some partying the startup’s CEO, Julian Kabab, did when he was in college in Paris. “That’s the real insight, to be honest with you,” Kabab said. “We had this habit of one of us running around with a GoPro (camera) on our forehead.”
Kabab is coy about the details, but suffice it to say he learned a valuable lesson – and is now cashing in.
Kabab and a friend grew Flashgap from 5,000 Euros into an app that has received significant investment thanks to hundreds of thousands of downloads in France and the United Kingdom. It launched Tuesday in the United States.
Users create an event in the app, which creates an album for photos and videos. The host plus friends invited to view the album can add to the album, but the pictures disappear after three seconds.
The album remains hidden until noon the next day when all who joined the event can view the album. Photos can be deleted by those who shot them and once deleted, they are gone from all users’ accounts.
A number of photo sharing apps have cropped up recently to keep the circulation of shared memories off the broader channels of social media and confining them to close friends and family.
Kabab said while the app was created with The Hangover in mind, he has been surprised by various ways people are using the app. Users have created Flashgap albums at weddings, concerts, family events and are inviting friends and loved ones separated by geography to share in the moments.
“We wanted to launch just for our friends but then we saw all this engagement, even people in their 40s and 50s,” Kabab said.
The app also includes ways for users to comment on photos and Kabab believes the anticipation experienced while waiting for the noon hour for the album to appear makes people want to keep using the app.
The app is available for both iPhone and Android users.