Privacy Chat App Omlet Launches At SXSW

With both Assange and Snowden speaking at SXSW this year, privacy and surveillance have usurped much else at the Austin conference. It’s a fortuitous set of circumstances for Omlet, an app developed by Stanford PhD students and professors that gives users control over where the content they create is stored, controlled, and monetized. The idea is that the app decentralizes the location of the content, allowing users to manage their data in a granular fashion. It does this by linking with users’ Box and Dropbox accounts, accessing data from these available sources. Omlet does have some ideas about monetization, such as deals with these other storage services, but for now the app remains focused on usability and privacy before all else. It’s a sign of the times that, in the congested world of messaging apps, a new product has carved out an important space for itself by putting privacy first.