If you took Geocities, dressed it stovepipe jeans, combed back its hair, and strapped it to a smartphone, it might look like Adsy, a soon-to-launch app from a London-based startup that is raising money on Kickstarter.
Adsy has the very simple proposition of letting you create mobile Web apps from a mobile browser with just touches and gestures. All you do is open the app maker, choose your images and backgrounds, add and style some text, paste on some buttons, and then use your finger to “paint” links – to pictures, to other pages, to phone numbers – onto the app. And it’s all in HTML5, so the app works across platforms and devices.
We’ve got a policy against embedding demo videos in our posts, but in this case I’m making an exception because the app isn’t yet available, because it is a very visual experience, and because the founders were clever enough to play to my ego by producing a tailored video that shows how the app works.
Adsy CEO and founder Frederick Tubiermont hopes the app maker will appeal to the same crowd who used to love building websites on Geocities or MySpace (back in the days when it had a capital ‘S’), as well as brands, bands, and individuals who want to promote something, or even sell tickets. While an Adsy app could be something as simple as a profile page or band website, it could also become something much greater through creative use of links and imagery. The apps will all live under one URL at adsy.me, and they will be embeddable in websites.
The app is set to launch on December 24 with a free version and a $4.99/month premium version, which will come with extra plug-ins, such as an appointments button that allows users to set up meetings with app visitors, and picture galleries.
Adsy is a spin-off of a prototype built by two coders at an AngelHack hackathon in London. CEO Tubiermont is funding the company with his own money, and he sees the Kickstarter campaign, which is seeking only £5,000, as a way to build pre-launch buzz for the app. The three-man company will remain bootstrapped for the foreseeable future.
Tubiermont cut his tech teeth in the early days of mobile, first with a company that sold logos and ringtones for feature phones, and then with a company that sold consumer loans via SMS, which he sold to a French banking partner. He has since become a financial producer for a record label, which counts PJ Harvey and the Boxer Rebellion under its management, and he even had a two-year stint as a Cirque de Soleil-like circus owner in Belgium, his home country. His oddball sense of humor is on display in a 4-minute burlesque-style road movie that he made to promote Adsy.
Adsy steps into a space that has yet to catch the consumer’s imagination. Other mobile app makers Zapd and Mdot were both recently acquired by RealSelf and GoDaddy respectively. To avoid the same fate, Adsy will have to execute well on its marketing promises and convince consumers that their 542 other online presences just aren’t enough.
[Photo via Adsy]