Hello, the anti-Facebook social network which is famous for its no-ads business model constructed around a clean user experience has launched the brand new Ello for iOS app in the iTunes store. The startup got attention with its “anti-Facebook” policy of promising to never use advertising or to sell customer data to third parties. Last September, a surge in interest made Ello membership a hot ticket, with invitations selling on eBay at prices up to $500.

In announcing the public launch, Ello provided no details on numbers of members but said there were “millions” using the platform thewindowsinsider. “The new app is beautiful with dozens of unique features,” said Ello co-founder and chief executive Paul Budnitz. The app, which requires iOS 8 or later, promises a “beautiful and elegant interface” with support for SoundCloud, U screen, Bandcamp on Vimeo, YouTube, and GIFs.

Ello tries to make a comeback by launching an iPhone app for its ad-free social network

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Ello launches an iOS mobile app and outlines plans for the future:

Ello began as a private community of around 90 individuals mostly made up of artists who were fed up with the mess and other complex algorithms present in other sites, Budnitz said. One of the good things about Ello is that as a public benefit organisation, they do not offer clients’ personal information to outsiders. The majority of its users are located in the U.S. with half of its users are made up collectively of users from Britain, India, Germany, Brazil, France and Japan.

Now the service will let people post photos, videos and music from SoundCloud that can also be reposted and “loved” by a user’s friends. Even though it is being regarded as an alternative to Facebook, The Verge argues that the user experience resembles Tumblr more. Another feature of the mobile app is that it can scan a user’s contact list to find friends already using the service; a feature that’s considered to be really important to the up and coming social network.

Ad-free social network Ello goes public

The desktop version of Ello also got a boost, with upgrades like full search, real-time alerts, private messaging, private groups, and “Loves.” The latter aggregates marked posts into a separate stream, allowing users to save and collect content.

In terms of users’ privacy and security, Budnitz says that user email addresses are encrypted and are not kept by the social network. User data collected by the service is rendered useless to the service which means it doesn’t keep it.

Ello targets an audience older than the usual social network users so shaping the business model to align with the audience’s interests is a top priority for them. “Those are the people who have their own credit cards and earn their own money. Your exact fans will be the people who see things in your Ello store,” Budnitz closes.