BEVERLY HILLS—Chaim Haas and Sarah Snow are here to tell you that you can Glide.
No, Haas and Snow don’t offer superpowers. They are, however, offering super-communication by way of their mobile app Glide, a video texting service that allows people to instantly share video messages.
Snow, who also goes by the moniker “Sarah Glide,” is the face of the app itself, a friendly helper that pops-up within the app to guide users through potential problems and new features.
For his part, Haas, Glide’s Head of Communications, is responsible for rallying public awareness to their unique and comprehensive service, one he believes should unseat text messaging as the world’s favored means of immediate communication.
“We think there’s a better way to communicate than text messaging,” Haas told Canyon News. “Snapchat believes in visual communication just like we do, but they’re all about ephemeral messaging. We believe that there are certain moments that can only be captured on video.”
Glide was founded in 2012 by Ari Roisman, Jonathan Caras, and Adam Korbl, entrepreneurial-minded men who found themselves far away from the comforts of family and home after emigrating to Israel.
“Two of our founders grew-up in the states, one of them grew up in Australia, and they all ended up in Israel,” said Haas. “They were trying to keep in touch with their families using Skype and WhatsApp, but it’s painful, you have to schedule everything, and sometimes the technology doesn’t work. You have to be fully engaged in a conversation the entire time.”
“So they thought, how do we come up with something that’s as convenient as text messaging with the richness of video? That’s where Glide comes in.”
The app’s popularity has since exploded, attracting a user-base hungry to experience a more intimate messaging medium.
However, a significant catalyst to that explosion came from an unexpected demographic.
The video texting service has spread like wildfire through the Deaf community, providing a revolutionary means for Deaf people to instantly send messages in American Sign Language.
Because ASL is a language so rich in facial expression and body language, the app empowers ASL users in fully expressing themselves on the go.
This development inspired Snow, the effective emissary between the app and the general public, to begin learning sign language.
“I thought that it would be really cool to learn sign language so that everyone in our community can understand what I’m saying,” said Snow. “While learning sign language, I realized I didn’t know what the sign for Glide was.”
“In my first video for the deaf community, I asked what sign we should use for Glide? So I showed them four different examples of signs that I’ve seen. And then one of the users submitted something that was completely different and everyone really liked it. So that’s what we went with.”
Recognizing Glide’s popularity in the Deaf world, Haas and Snow recently took to visiting epicenters of Deaf culture, visiting places such as Texas School for the Deaf, California School for the Deaf, Fremont as well as California State University Northridge.
Now that Glide has become a staple within the Deaf community, Haas and Snow hope to see the world take to Glide in similar fashion. Though most of the app’s users reside in the United States, pockets of Gliders in Latin America and Europe have begun popping up.
“Globalization will probably happen towards the second half of the year,” said Haas. “But there’s already certain markets that we’re looking at very strongly. Obviously, other English speaking markets, but also Latin America, Spain, and Portugal.”
Is video texting the way of the future? Will the ever-developing world of mobile technology bring people separated by distances ranging from tens to thousands of miles in more intimate contact than ever before?
Haas and Snow certainly believe this is to be true. In their opinion, it’s simply a matter of learning how to Glide.