As people vouch to delete Facebook in the wake of a massive data breach scandal, Orkut Buyukkokten — a former Google employee who founded the trendsetter social networking website Orkut.com more than a decade ago — on Wednesday launched a new social network “Hello” in India.
Well before we had Snapchat, Facebook, and even Twitter, Orkut was all the range in India. It was arguably the first streamlined social network that took hold in the country. After all, the haphazard, chaotic Hi5 doesn’t really count. However, Orkut eventually lost the race to Facebook, finally being shut down in September 2014, long after users had abandoned it.
Built particularly for the new smartphone generation, the “Hello” app aims to bring people together around their interests in order to create positive as well as meaningful authentic connections along with sustained social engagement.
“We designed ‘Hello’ to help you make connections in the real world. It’s a social network built on loves not likes, and I’m delighted to say ‘Hello’ to India once again,” said Buyukkokten, now the CEO of San Francisco-based Hello Network Inc.
For the unknown, Orkut Buyukkokten is a former Google employee and the current CEO of Hello Network, who has now announced his company’s entry into the Indian market amid all the controversies surrounding the data breach scandal involving Facebook. Interestingly, since Facebook was the one to dethrone Orkut and force the company to shut down its operations in 2014, which was once the leading social media network in India and Brazil, it seems like an irony that it is back with a new name ‘Hello’ at a time when Facebook is going through its worst of times.
The app, currently available in Brazil with nearly one million downloads, was in the beta test mode in India for the past several months.
Hello is the next generation of Orkut, and is probably the first social network that lets you connect with people who have the same interest and passions as you.
Hello is different from Facebook and Twitter as it asks you to select five “personas” that you have an interest in and it will help you connect with people of the same interest.
“Today’s online networks force people to treat each other totally differently from how they would behave face-to-face. Technology should help us become more understanding, more optimistic, kinder and better people,” the Orkut founder added.
The app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Orkut was owned and operated by Google and was named after its creator, Orkut Buyukkokten. Google shut down Orkut on 30 September 2014.