This Israeli startup hopes to become the go-to source for sharing and discovering videos from anywhere online. Should the idea take off, it could change the way we consume video content.
You would be excused for admitting that you suffer from online overwhelm. After all, we are all bombarded with so much content on a daily basis that finding anything of real interest can be a struggle. This is especially the case when it comes to online videos which we mostly stumble upon haphazardly. Rainvid, a social network for video bookmarking, is here to change that.
The Tel Aviv and Berlin-based startup aims to provide an easy way to access, discover and share videos online. Unlike a platform like YouTube which is limited to YouTube content, with Rainvid users can share, curate, and follow lists of videos from anywhere online. Anyone can bookmark a video through either the Rainvid site or a Chrome add-on. These users are known as ‘video catchers’.
In addition, Rainvid indexes videos from a range of sources including YouTube, Facebook, Vine, NBC, NBA, and Yahoo. This makes it easy to discover a wide variety of video content from a diverse selection of sources in one place.
More than social video bookmarking
Rainvid has tried to add elements of gamification to the platform by enabling users to like the videos and lists other community members submit. The number of views on videos submitted are treated like points, and are added to a user’s profile. Users with the most points will be added to Rainvid’s featured users. Every user also gets a profile where the videos submitted, video lists created, and lists being followed are displayed.
But Rainvid is more than a social video bookmarking site. The platform could serve as an additional distribution channel for publishers, making it possible for these publishers to manage and control the monetization of the content. This is because Rainvid’s technology indexes the video players, ensuring that videos play using the original site player. As a result, the content publisher will still have complete control over any ads or monetization platforms they may be using.
The inspiration behind Rainvid
The startup started out as another company, Adincon, that was developing technology for the adtech market. “In May 2015, we felt that Adincon was not a company that could scale so we decided to re-use our technology that was about analyzing web-pages and extracting their components (like images and videos), into a different market, and this is how Rainvid was born,” said Amir Harel, Rainvid Co-Founder and CEO. The technology behind Adincon is now being used to power Rainvid.
Since then, Rainvid has been growing steadily. While it is still a small community, the team behind it has plans to turn it into the Pinterest for video. In fact that is one way to understand the startup’s name. Harel explained that his co-founder, CTO and brother Yair Harel would explain it as a combination of a rainbow and video (a rainbow of videos), as a way of indicting the variety of videos on offer. “If you ask me, Rainvid is short for rain + video to describe the amount of videos that we are supporting,” said Harel. Either way, aiming to become the Pinterest of video is nothing short of ambitious.
Interestingly, the startup does not currently have a business model. Instead Harel explained that their main aim is to keep users happy. “However, in the next few years video is going to be almost 75% of the internet traffic, so we are pretty sure that there will be many interesting business models that we will consider over time as we progress,” he added.
He went on to explain that the business model would probably involve revenue sharing with content publishers. The two brother team are in the process of raising a $500K round of funding, adding to the amount previously raised $34.6k for Adincon.