There is a new social media app in town that’s been making waves recently. If you happen to use Twitter and Facebook, you may have noticed a lot of recent buzz over an app called Vero.
Vero, which is the Latin word for "Truth," is a photo-sharing social media app created by the Lebanese billionaire, Ayman Hariri. The app was actually launched in 2015, but it gained a flurry of new users over the weekend after several social media influencers posted that they would start using it. In fact, the surge in traffic was so high that the app reportedly crashed in some areas.
Only a week ago, Vero was a little-known app that didn't even rank in the App Store's top 1500 apps; it has since skyrocketed to the top.
Apart from its endorsement from social media influencers, Vero's sudden appeal seems to be due to the growing user dissatisfaction with Facebook’s service. Lately, Facebook has been criticized for a number of issues such as the spread of fake news on its platform, its user targeting techniques as well as the questionable algorithms governing its News Feed.
And Vero was only too happy to use its rival’s current woes to its advantage, branding itself as the "Facebook killer" with a less cluttered appearance and better user experience.
To distance itself from its competitors, Vero claims to offer a “social network that lets you be yourself." In its manifesto, Vero laments that “most social networks reduce everyone to a friend or a follower” which encourages people to share only the parts of their lives they think is the most interesting.
Vero’s brand positioning seems to be working. Not only is Facebook losing users to the newcomer, but Instagram users are switching to Vero as well. Some people are even calling Vero the "new Instagram."
One feature that distinguishes Vero from other social media platforms is that it has no mysterious algorithm in place for what users see when they open the app. User feeds on Vero are easier to follow as they show posts in a chronological order.
In addition, the app promises a more gentle approach to how it collects user data. According to its manifesto, "Vero only collects the data we believe is necessary to provide users with a great experience and to ensure the security of their accounts."
But users should expect such “perks” to come with a tradeoff. Unlike Facebook or Instagram, Vero charges a fee to use its platform, which might not turn off some users in the long run.