Shalom Life | December 28, 2014

Startup Club: rinbw

The latest social media app isn’t about popularity, but about connecting to the people who matter the most

By: Caitlin Marceau

Published: December 26th, 2014 in Business » Israel

Startup Club: rinbw

Over the past few decades, a growing number of small businesses involved in various industries have popped up around the world meeting the needs of an ever-growing, ever-changing market.

Jewish businessmen and innovators continue to excel throughout these industries, displaying their prowess as creative, forward-thinking entrepreneurs, and tapping into continuously developing markets with 'startup' companies.

In a bid to recognize these decorated entrepreneurs for their ongoing contributions and advancements to these fields, Shalom Life is pleased to present: Startup Club, highlighting the best and the brightest of Jewish entrepreneurs who continue to provide our community with new, influential and innovative ideas that will forever change the way we interact with the world, and with one another.

Follow our lead and we’ll follow yours – send us tips or suggestions via email, comment below or tweet us @ShalomLife, in our mission to celebrate the most visionary of Jewish entrepreneurs.

Check out last week's inductee into the Club here.

Business: rinbw

Base of Operations: Israel

Entrepreneur: Itay Adam

Industry: Technology

Founded: 2014

There’s nothing like picking up the phone and talking to someone you haven’t spoke to in a while. But it’s not always the right time to talk, and sometimes your normally happy friends are in a less than a great mood. Thanks to rinbw, however, you can know how your friends are doing before you even pick up the phone.

The app was created by Itay Adam, a man who made headlines when he raised $2 million in funding based off his five-slide presentation about, well, nothing. Rinbw allows people to look at their phone contacts differently, and with a more human touch. Unlike Facebook, which puts a distance between online users and the real people they’re connecting with, or Snapchat which allows you to see each other without ever really interacting, rinbw melds the digital and the personal. You can see your friend’s new car as you place your call. You can tell the world you aced an exam before they pick up the phone to ask you how you did.

Rinbw uses five-second videos to help share your daily moments with your closest friends and family members. It lets you “like” each other’s videos by sending each other fruit, but it never feels like a competition (unlike other social media platforms) as there’s no counter for how much fruit you get. Rinbw isn’t about popularity, it’s about connecting to the people who matter and being able to share your life with those you care the most about.


We at Shalom Life got a chance to speak with Itay Adam and ask him about the newest app on the market.

Shalom Life: Where did the idea for rinbw come from?

Itay Adam: Well, it started when our VP of product brought her eleven-year-old kid to the office. I found myself playing with the kid on XBox when he suddenly said, "I also wanted to build an app once. I wanted to create a new phone book with images so that my sister could call our grandpa without the need to read. She could see our grandpa’s photo and call him." I thought that it was a good concept to explore. A new way to bring living colors to the phonebook. We then added video, five-second videos with no sound, so that it won't bother the users when opening the app in public. Then came the need of acknowledgment, so we added fruits because we're all vegans and we wanted something cute. No comments, no texting, no fruit counting. Just easy immediate feedback. The rinbw name came up when we thought about the product’s true meaning, which was adding living colors to plain names and numbers. The spelling of rinbw, by five letters, came in synergy with the five second videos and the number of colors in rinbw(‘s logo).

How did the company come together?

I know most of the team from past experience. The team assembling process period was one week’s time.

What have been the biggest challenges in starting rinbw?

To understand what people want. Why would they want it. Why should they use it.

Alternatively, what have been the biggest rewards of it?

We are still far away from any sort of reward, but I believe that the way people download the app. and the fact that they invite people to use it with them, is truly satisfying.

This app blurs the line between phone book and social media. Which do you consider it to be more like?

What's a phone book if not a list of people we social interact with?

Why do you think it’s so important to stay connected, and how do you think ribw helps accomplish that?

Rinbw is a new form of interaction. Instead of texting people, you take a rinbw. It's easy, far (...) more informative than texting, and far far much easier and faster than writing someone. You're leaving the office? Cool. Let your wife know you’re on your way. Take a rinbw. Stuck in traffic? Take a rinbw. In five seconds you can show where you are on the way, and that you're going to be late.

The sort of videos we post to rinbw are not like any other videos we post to Facebook, Instagram, or any other network. On rinbw you show your real life moments. The trivial ones. The ones that mean nothing to the world, but the world closest to you.

Currently the app is only available for iPhone users. Any word on when it’s going to hit the Android market?

We're working on it and I believe we will push one to the Play Store in 2 weeks.

Are there any new features ribw users can expect to see sometime soon?

There are many features in our pipeline.

Are there any other projects our readers can look forward to seeing from your team?

I cannot disclose any information at this point.

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