There are plenty of reasons to leave the major companies — Yahoo, Google, Microsoft — and pursue projects elsewhere. Recently, we’ve seen everything from the “I got let go” to the “It’s time for a change in scenery” excuse. One of the most interesting reasons, however, is always to establish your own company, since these tech gurus always manage to come up with exciting new ideas using their unique industry insights. Such is the case with the three former Googlers who created Beluga.
According to a report from Louis Gray, these three ex-Googlers “hold pedigrees from Google AdSense, Google Adwords, and Gmail.” The concept behind the new site and the applications that back it is fairly simple: It’s social networking, but with a much greater degree of organization and specificity.
Rather than broadcasting your thoughts, opinions on work, drunken party pictures, gory details of your personal life, or controversial political views to everyone who you’ve “friended” or who’s “following” you, you only send updates to those in selected “Pods.”
Now, “pods” is just a fancy way of saying “organized groups.” You can create and organize pods as you see fit, adding your various social contacts to groups that are appropriate — and then managing your messages appropriately. Beluga also lets you send mass texts, including ones that integrate images, using the contact information you’ve already paired with the individual in your address book.
This concept is much what Paul Adams, former researcher at Google and current employee at Facebook, said was needed for Facebook to thrive. However, since Facebook has now added a “groups” feature of their own, Beluga may be just a little late for real success. Nonetheless, their impressive and lightweight applications for both Android and iPhone, as well as unique capabilities like text broadcasts, will make them an interesting competitor to keep an eye on.