Koo app: India's Alternative to "X" Shuts Down

Koo app: India's Alternative to "X" Shuts Down

Remember Koo?

It is a microblogging site that was launched in 2020 to compete directly with Twitter, or let’s say X. It melted many people’s hearts, especially when in 2021, X was involved in a disagreement with the Indian government. Koo, which is centered around Indian languages and has a recognizable microblogging layout, gained popularity as government officials and local people started using it as an answer to X and as a great alternative to X.

Thus, what was special about Koo?

First of all, it supported the regional languages. While X was mostly dominated by English, Koo provided the users with the freedom to write in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, and several other languages. This went down well with a large chunk of the Indian social media users who preferred their regional languages.

Secondly, the user interface of was clear and similar to x hence users could easily move to the new platform.

But the tides turned. Launched in 2016, Koo initially had more than 10 million active users; however, it failed to achieve adequate financial sustainability.

Some of the strategies such as finding a strategic partner to assist in funding for expansion failed due to unsuccessful negotiations with companies such as Dailyhunt.

X still posed a strong threat due to its already existing user base and its international presence.

Koo just could not replicate the same level of interaction or get the large advertisers on board.

The founders of Koo, in a letter to the public, admitted to the problems. They focused on the problem of defining long-term financing for an aggressive Indian startup in a highly saturated market. This is a true case of Koo, which should be a reminder of how competitive the social media space is in India and all over the world.

“We explored partnerships with multiple larger internet companies, conglomerates and media houses but these talks didn’t yield the outcome we wanted,” Koo app founders wrote on LinkedIn, BBC reported.

Although it gave a glimpse of how active the Indian social media market is, the absence of resources and a formidable competitor resulted in its collapse.

Even though the Koo app is no longer in existence, it has made a mark. It proved the capabilities of regional languages in the digital sphere and sparked a movement of domestic social media platforms.

Well, perhaps the future will open a place for another contender and it will be able to challenge the leaders in the current social media landscape of India. We will have to wait for this.