U.S. Markets closed

5 reasons Peach could compete with Facebook

Daniel Roberts
Senior Writer

The social networking app Peach launched last week, and as often happens on the Internet, it enjoyed a sudden viral moment of fame and excitement. Then its moment appeared to end.

Peach cleverly combines elements of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vine, the 6-second looping video app that Twitter acquired in 2012. It was created, the company confirms, by Vine founder Dom Hofmann. (Hofmann declined an interview.) But it is most similar to the communications tool Slack, which took off last year at the offices of publishing and tech companies, helping the private startup achieve a valuation of nearly $3 billion.

Peach users type in "magic words" a la Slack commands in order to source content from various places: type "weather" to post the weather in your area; type "here" to post your current location; type "draw" to doodle right on the screen, and so on. It gives users the capability to post many different media, from a GIF (sourced from the GIF library Giphy) to a looping video (like Vine).

Peach works almost like sending a text message—you simply post the note, photo, video, or link, and your connections see it. And there's an unusual twist: it isn't public. Users have no public profile or URL that they can share on the web. It all happens within the app. That could be a risk if Peach wants to grow its userbase, but it also helps the platform feel more intimate. Still, many of the familiar elements of typical social media platforms are here: you can "like" a post, comment, and "wave" to a friend to nudge them. (Remember the Facebook poke?) Or you can "cake" them, or "boop" them, or six other commands.

It's a lot of fun.

But if you ask some outlets, you don't need to bother figuring out how to use it, because it will soon be dead or is already dead. Tech blog BGR declared as much on Monday, using Peach's slip from No. 85 to No. 129 in the App Store as evidence. "This seems as obvious as the death of Meerkat one month after its debut," the site wrote.

Not so fast. Meerkat, the live-video app that was a breakout mega-hit at last year's South By Southwest, lost steam because Twitter backed a competitor, Periscope, virtually boxing Meerkat out. It was a unique case. And App Store ranking isn't always the best sign of popularity, though it's an easy metric to use.

A better comparison for Peach is to Ello, another upstart social media web site that showed early promise when it launched in August 2014. The platform pledged to steer clear of ads, and was instantly attractive to creative types and artists. It used, like Peach, fun shorthand to post updates. It launched an advertising campaign that specifically called out Facebook. And yes, the buzz around Ello has now all but died.

But Peach may have much more staying power. Here are five arguments why.

1. Brands love it.

Brands from Starbucks to Taco Bell to pop cultute site Boing Boing were quick to jump on Peach. J. Crew is on it. Vice is on board. Merriam-Webster is using it to post its "dictionary word of the day" one day early. As Instagram and Snapchat both try to figure out how to make money through selling ads, having brands hop on Peach early is a good sign that it can eventually make money from them.

Niv Dror runs social media for Product Hunt, a site that features curated apps, gadgets and web sites every day. He says he is seeing more engagement from Peach posts than tweets—and Product Hunt has more than 100,000 followers on Twitter. "It's a blank canvas for whatever you want to make it," Dror tells Yahoo Finance. "And they all embed natively. If you post a photo, it feels like Instagram. If I record a short video with it, it feels just like Vine. When you post a link and it creates a little preview, it feels like Slack. We've grown so fast, I have to assume we're one of the biggest accounts on there. But you can't tell." (Peach does not show a friend or follower count, another feature that sets it apart from Facebook and Twitter.)

2. It isn't Facebook.

Facebook continues to become a self-contained Internet; what was once a place for personal photos and status updates is now a gaming hub, a video library, a commerce marketplace, a messaging service, and so on. As Mark Zuckerberg continues these efforts, some users are getting turned off. There's a lot of clutter in your Facebook feed these days: advertisements, invitations to apps, sponsored content. Many people crave something cleaner and sparser. Peach doesn't show you anything but your list of friends, and you can jump in to see their posts.

3. It takes the best of Twitter, leaves the worst.

Peach feels like what Twitter was when it first launched: an SMS-messaging app only. You would send out a tweet and only those to whom you sent it could see it. But on Twitter these days, your timeline has a lot of content you don't want to see right now, but from accounts you don't want to unfollow. Peach solves that: there is no feed. You must click a friend's name to view their updates, which means you can ignore someone as long as you like. You only see what you choose to view. And it works the opposite way, too: no one can see your posts unless you approve them. (There is a 'friends of friends' tab, but it is curated with suggested accounts; there is no way to view a specific account without requesting to be friends.)

4. It has a sense of humor.

Peach is funny, and even cute, because emojis are cute. Its users tend to approach posts with a sense of humor—and how could they not, when the app has options like "quarantine" a friend (send them the emoji of a smiley with a health mask) and "shout" (create a big flashing neon animation of a word or short exclamation). As Facebook and Twitter have grown, they've both lost that sense of wonder. Peach still has it—though you could attribute that to the sheen of being new.

5. It's remarkably simple.

Ello, the last "it" Facebook challenger before Peach, relied on understanding short codes that were fun to master, but not obvious. Some liked that aspect, but it also meant that it was difficult for the non-tech savvy to use and understand. Peach's "magic words" are obvious and simple—and they're no secret. The app happily displays a list of all them for you, or you can see what pops up when you type a single letter and let it auto-fill commands. Twitter, though it has become integral to media and important for news-gathering, has a barrier to entry for people of a certain age. But anyone who has sent text messages can quickly figure out how to use Peach.

By the way, we are on Peach at @yahoofinance. If you give the app a try, check us out.

 

  • Why Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. Stock Closed 11% Lower on Friday
    Business
    Motley Fool

    Why Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. Stock Closed 11% Lower on Friday

    Analyst Pierre Ferragu from financial firm New Street Research set his price target for AMD at $18 per share, arguing that the stock has been priced for a level of success that simply isn't realistic. "AMD's stock price reflects a scenario we don't believe possible," Ferragu wrote. In particular, Ferragu sees larger rival Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) getting its manufacturing act together as we speak.

  • Now is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ chance to invest in US pot companies, investor says
    Finance
    Yahoo Finance

    Now is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ chance to invest in US pot companies, investor says

    With some Canadian pot stocks posting triple-digit return rates this year, many retail investors have looked north to pour cash into cannabis. U.S. cannabis companies are worth a lot more than their current valuations suggest since federal illegality has put undue pressure on the industry, said David Wenger, a New York attorney and senior editor of the Cannabis Law Digest.

  • What happens if you win Mega Millions' $970M jackpot?
    News
    Associated Press

    What happens if you win Mega Millions' $970M jackpot?

    Despite the terrible odds — one in 302.5 million for those keeping score at home — someone will eventually match all six numbers and win the Mega Millions jackpot, which now stands at $970 million. Here are some answers for someone holding that prized lottery ticket for what would be the second-largest lottery jackpot in U.S. history. Lottery officials recommend winners take a deep breath, put their winning ticket in a safe spot and consult with a reputable financial planner before popping over to the lottery headquarters.

  • Cramer's 5 favorite tech stocks right now, including Appl...
    MSFT
    CNBC Videos

    Cramer's 5 favorite tech stocks right now, including Appl...

    Jim Cramer reveals his top "power" players in the information technology space, including consumer tech plays, software giants and a fintech kicker.

  • Why PBF Energy Inc and Other Refining Stocks Are Getting Clobbered Today
    Business
    Motley Fool

    Why PBF Energy Inc and Other Refining Stocks Are Getting Clobbered Today

    Shares of PBF Energy Inc (NYSE: PBF) tumbled as much as 10.9% on Friday, joining a sectorwide sell-off that also saw refiners Valero Energy (NYSE: VLO), Phillips 66 (NYSE: PSX), Marathon Petroleum (NYSE: MPC), and HollyFontier (NYSE: HFC) take it on the chin by sinking more than 5% at one point in the day. A trio of factors seems to be driving these declines.

  • What Analysts Recommend for Stryker Stock
    Finance
    Market Realist

    What Analysts Recommend for Stryker Stock

    Of the total 28 analysts covering Stryker (SYK) in October 2018, 19 analysts have given the stock a “buy” or higher rating, and nine analysts have given Stryker a “hold” rating. The mean rating for Stryker is 1.93 with a target price of $187.27, which implies an upside potential of 8.2% over Stryker’s closing price of $173.1 on October 18. In comparison, peers Baxter International (BAX), Boston Scientific (BSX), and Zimmer Biomet Holdings (ZBH) have a mean rating of 2.41x, 1.52x, and 2.31x, respectively, and a target price of $79.79, $41.57, and $136.92, respectively.

  • Here’s why you shouldn’t retire super early — even if you can
    Business
    MarketWatch

    Here’s why you shouldn’t retire super early — even if you can

    Despite the many perks of early retirement — waking up whenever you want, for example — it wasn’t the easiest decision. Earnings tend to peak around 48 for men and about 39 for women, according to an analysis by PayScale.

  • Why Valero Energy, eBay, and New Age Beverages Slumped Today
    Business
    Motley Fool

    Why Valero Energy, eBay, and New Age Beverages Slumped Today

    Some major market benchmarks managed to hang onto their gains, but the Nasdaq Composite, and Russell 2000 indexes posted losses of 0.5% to 1.25%, and the S&P 500 was virtually flat. Valero Energy (NYSE: VLO), eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY), and New Age Beverages (NASDAQ: NBEV) were among the worst performers on the day. Valero Energy dropped 10% after the refinery company announced that it would buy back all outstanding units of its related MLP, Valero Energy Partners (NYSE: VLP).

  • Suddenly Toxic, Saudi Prince Is Shunned by Investors He Courted
    World
    Bloomberg

    Suddenly Toxic, Saudi Prince Is Shunned by Investors He Courted

    Now Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman could become the biggest risk to his own project. Everything changed when Jamal Khashoggi walked into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2 and didn’t come out. Prince Mohammed, who’s denied any knowledge of Khashoggi’s fate, still has his defenders -– notably Donald Trump.

  • News
    MarketWatch

    Cleveland-Cliffs CEO slams Goldman Sachs analyst on earnings call; 'You are a disaster'

    The chief executive of mining and resources company Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. (clf) slammed a Goldman Sachs analyst on the company's earnings call earlier Friday, accusing him of failing to understand numbers. You are an embarrassment to your parents," Lourenco Goncalves said in response to a question from another analyst on the call, according to a FactSet transcript. "Matthew Korn from Goldman Sachs, you can run, but you can't hide.

  • Business
    Benzinga

    Jim Cramer Shares His Thoughts On Amarin, AT&T, McDonald's And More

    On CNBC's "Mad Money Lightning Round", Jim Cramer said Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: ARWR) is a great speculative stock. Cramer is willing to endorse AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), but he thinks Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) offers more safety

  • Hillary Clinton under fire over Lewinsky comment
    Politics
    Fox Business Videos

    Hillary Clinton under fire over Lewinsky comment

    Madison Gesiotto, National Diversity Coalition for Trump, and Democratic strategist Al Mottur on how former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said that her husband’s affair with Monica Lewinsky was not an abuse of power.

  • This Marijuana Investment Firm's 11 Top Cannabis Picks for Explosive Growth
    Business
    Motley Fool

    This Marijuana Investment Firm's 11 Top Cannabis Picks for Explosive Growth

    The marijuana industry has become a hotbed of investment activity, and players of all sizes are looking to get into the action. On top of all the interest from ordinary investors, cannabis companies have seen demand rise from sophisticated institutional investors that have experience with deploying larger amounts of investment capital in search of high-growth opportunities. One of the most interesting marijuana investment specialists that investors can follow is Canopy Rivers (NASDAQOTH: CNPOF).

  • Kmart employee chokes up as he makes his final announcement before the store closes permanently
    Business
    Yahoo Lifestyle

    Kmart employee chokes up as he makes his final announcement before the store closes permanently

    Joshua Englert, manager of the closing Kmart store in McMurray, Penn., says a final farewell to customers. Some shoppers might be sad to see Kmart stores go, after the chain’s parent company, Sears Holdings, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Monday. Taking to his Facebook on Sunday evening, Englert posted a video of himself saying, “Attention, Kmart shoppers” over the store’s PA system for the very last time after working at the superstore for 18 years.

  • Marijuana investors may lose 90% of their money in Canada, so consider the really big prize elsewhere
    News
    MarketWatch

    Marijuana investors may lose 90% of their money in Canada, so consider the really big prize elsewhere

    Marijuana presents a tremendous opportunity for investors over the next few years. Naïve investors are excited. The reality is that professionals will pick their pockets, and many naïve investors who are excited now will end up losing 90% of their investment.

  • Valero to fold logistics arm back into parent company in $950 million deal
    Finance
    American City Business Journals

    Valero to fold logistics arm back into parent company in $950 million deal

    Less than five years after it was created as a master limited partnership, San Antonio-based pipeline and storage terminal company Valero Energy Partners LP is merging back with its parent company.  Valero Energy Partners (NYSE: VLP) announced after close of market on Thursday that it is merging with Valero Energy Corp. (NYSE: VLO), its general partner Valero Energy Partners GP LLC and Forest Merger Sub LLC, a subsidiary that was incorporated in Delaware as a merge vehicle by Valero on Tuesday. Under a merger agreement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Valero will buy all outstanding shares of VLP stock at $42.25 per share in a transaction that is expected to be worth $950 million.

  • America’s Biggest Employer Isn’t Hiring Seasonal Employees This Year. Here’s the Reason Why
    Business
    Money

    America’s Biggest Employer Isn’t Hiring Seasonal Employees This Year. Here’s the Reason Why

    For the third year, Walmart won’t be hiring tens of thousands of seasonal employees to provide extra support during the holidays. Instead, Walmart is forgoing the long-standing practice in favor of giving it’s full- and part-time employees more hours and opportunities to earn extra cash. The idea, Walmart says, is to fulfill the wishes of many of its employees.

  • Marathon Petroleum: Analyzing the Short Interest
    Finance
    Market Realist

    Marathon Petroleum: Analyzing the Short Interest

    Will Marathon Petroleum’s Q3 Earnings Beat the Estimates? (Continued from Prior Part) Short interest in Marathon Petroleum The short interest, represented as a percentage of outstanding shares, in Marathon Petroleum (MPC) has risen from 5.4% on July

  • The Mega Millions Jackpot Is Now $970 Million. Here's What That Could Buy
    Finance
    Fortune

    The Mega Millions Jackpot Is Now $970 Million. Here's What That Could Buy

    You know the odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot are insanely low. The jackpot for the Mega Millions drawing, set to take place Friday, Oct. 19 at 11 p.m., is currently estimated at $970 million. Generous souls will give some of their jackpot winnings to charity or start one of their own, but if you’ve got a quirky sense of humor, it’s worth pointing out that the $970 million Mega Millions jackpot is enough to pay for a McDonald’s Happy Meal (hamburger, not Chicken McNuggets) for every person in America.

  • Why ServiceSource International Is Imploding Today
    Business
    Motley Fool

    Why ServiceSource International Is Imploding Today

    Shares of ServiceSource (NASDAQ: SREV), a provider of outsourced inside sales and customer service solutions, are being obliterated today. The stock is down 46% as of 11:07 a.m. EDT on Friday after the company shared preliminary third-quarter results and revised its full-year guidance.

  • This Refining Giant Is the Latest Energy Company to Give Up on Its MLP
    Business
    Motley Fool

    This Refining Giant Is the Latest Energy Company to Give Up on Its MLP

    The energy sector continues to experience a gigantic consolidation wave, which is causing master limited partnerships (MLPs) to drop like flies. Valero Energy (NYSE: VLO) is behind the latest disappearing act in the space after it agreed to buy out its MLP Valero Energy Partners (NYSE: VLP). Valero Energy launched Valero Energy Partners in late 2013, joining its refining rivals in creating an income-producing vehicle that would steadily buy its parent's midstream assets.

  • 5 U.S. Marijuana Stocks to Buy Before the Market Lights Up
    Finance
    InvestorPlace

    5 U.S. Marijuana Stocks to Buy Before the Market Lights Up

    As such, the full range of recreational products offered by Tilray (NASDAQ:TLRY), Canopy Growth (NYSE:CGC) and their peers can now be sold throughout Canada. One question for American investors is how that affects U.S. marijuana stocks? What happened in Canada changes little in the U.S. The federal ban on marijuana remains in place.

  • AMD's Q3 Earnings to Gain on Portfolio Strength & GPU Demand
    Business
    Zacks

    AMD's Q3 Earnings to Gain on Portfolio Strength & GPU Demand

    Advanced Micro Devices Inc AMD is set to report third-quarter 2018 results on Oct 24.Notably, AMD has a positive record of earnings surprises in the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 30.97%. In the last reported quarter, earnings of 14

  • Freeport’s Q3 2018 Earnings: What’s the Word on Wall Street?
    Finance
    Market Realist

    Freeport’s Q3 2018 Earnings: What’s the Word on Wall Street?

    Freeport-McMoRan (FCX) is scheduled to release its third-quarter earnings results on October 24. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect Freeport to post revenue of $4.5 billion in the third quarter. Freeport posted an adjusted EBITDA of $1.6 billion in the third quarter of 2017.

  • Marijuana stocks to watch: Aurora Cannabis investments may be more valuable than its pot
    News
    MarketWatch

    Marijuana stocks to watch: Aurora Cannabis investments may be more valuable than its pot

    Aurora Cannabis Inc. is a major pot producer, but if its bets on other cannabis companies continue to pay off, it may be able to stop actually growing weed on its own. Aurora (ACBFF)(CA:ACB) said recently its investments were worth more than C$700 million ($540 million) as of Sept. 21, bolstered in part by demand for pot stocks ahead of full legalization of marijuana in Canada on Wednesday. As the entire sector has benefited, so has Aurora’s portfolio, boosting the company’s fiscal fourth-quarter profit to C$79.9 million, after a loss of $20.8 million the year earlier.