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Grandma Launches Free Video-Call iPad App to Share Activities and Spend Time With Familyustyme Secures $2 Million in Funding (September 25, 2013)
SAUSALITO, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 09/25/13 -- ustyme, a free video-call app for iPad that creates shared experiences through quality content, like books and games, today announced its official launch in the Apple App Store. Turning screen time into "us-time," the app creates natural conversation around a shared activity and provides the context for spending time together. The company also announced $2 million in angel funding. ustyme is available for download on iPad generation 2 and newer, exclusively in the Apple App Store.
Co-founded by a first-time grandmother searching for a way to spend quality time with her grandson who lives more than 600 miles away, ustyme gives families and friends the opportunity to truly engage with each other and build connections over content like books and games that just aren't possible through simple phone or video calls.
"While nothing can replace actual time spent together, ustyme helps fill in those gaps when mom or dad is working late at the office or the grandparents won't be able to visit until Thanksgiving," said CEO, co-founder, grandmother and web conferencing pioneer Linda Salesky. "Being able to instantly connect with a loved one, no matter the distance, is an invaluable gift. With ustyme, we are broadening the ways people spend time together."
ustyme launches with a robust library of games and books, selected to generate conversation and encourage participation during a one-on-one video conversation. Classic stories, song books and original content within the ustyme store include "Goldilocks and the Three Bears," "The Little Red Hen," "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly" and "Scamper and Nut Nut." The ustyme store also offers a variety of popular games, like Go Fish, Four-in-a-Row, Chess and Checkers. Every month, more content will be added to the store for users to share and enjoy.
Using ustyme is as simple as downloading it for free in the Apple App Store, registering through Facebook Connect, Google or the app itself and inviting friends and family to also download the app on their iPad. Once registered, a new user's library is automatically populated with two books ("Three Little Pigs" and "Old MacDonald") and six games (such as Rock-Paper-Scissors). Once signed in, users are able to call each other, select the content of their choice and begin interacting directly within the book or game, while seeing and talking to each other during the video call.
ustyme was developed by a team of family-first entrepreneurs from a wide range of industries, including EA Games, Pixar and Picture Talk, the first platform created for global web conferencing. Generously funded by a group of angel investors, the company raised $2 million to prepare for launch.
ustyme is available for download in the Apple App Store and is compatible with iPad generation 2 and newer. ustyme is free to download and use, and content starts at $.99.
ustyme creates meaningful, deeper relationships through shared experiences around rich content like books and games. ustyme, a free video-call app for iPad, gives families and friends the opportunity to truly engage with each other and build connections that just aren't possible through simple phone calls. ustyme is a privately held, angel-funded company, based in Sausalito, Calif. For more information please visit, www.ustyme.com.
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