UIUC Team Profiles: The Binge

Founders and College Entrepreneur here with another team profile. Every week we’ll be providing you with a profile on a UIUC student startup. This time, we’re chatting with The Binge.

Description

Everybody is crazy about something. For example, I love watching TV Shows like Game of Thrones, Arrow, etc. and I normally get my updates from different websites. But it was always hard to follow all of them especially when you regularly follow more than 5 topics. I used to bookmark the different pages for each topic but it was not the best way. That’s when I had the idea for Binge. So, I decided to work on a platform that allows the users to simply follow the topics and then you get regular updates on them. It’s kind of similar to liking a page on Facebook and then getting the updates on your news feed. So you can follow any topic that you like and get all the new promotional videos, rumor articles, live scores, actor statements, basically all news on any topic right in one place.

We started building the prototype during the MHacks Hackathon in September and had an early version prototype ready by the end of the 36 hours. However, we felt that the product lacked a wow factor as it felt more like a generic news application. We are currently pursuing a new direction for the idea.

Mission

Today’s generation have varied interests and love good content. But they normally don’t have the time to read the entire article even if they are interested in the topic. And that is someplace where we believe there’s a gap as the current news providers/ content creators are still creating long articles nobody has time for and are more concerned with getting ‘clicks’ and ‘reads’ which they then market for advertising money. That’s the void we aim to fill with Binge. We want to redefine the way people get their news.

Team Members and background

Ishaan Kansal — Founder and Lead Designer

Rusheel Shahani — Lead Backend Developer (University of Waterloo)

How did you meet?

We started talking over the internet when I was interviewing people from the Hackathon hackers group and asked him if he wanted to work on it during MHacks and he agreed. That’s how the team met. Then we worked with Tim Mui and Kunal Shah to get a prototype ready during the hackathon. However, as of now, Tim and Kunal won’t be continuing with Binge due to their school commitments.

If you could give your past self advice, it would be to….

Don’t stop. Keep working on this as this is going to turn out good.

Progress so far

We had an alpha version ready by the end of MHacks but we were not satisfied with it. So we are currently pursuing a new direction for Binge; A direction that is more in line with the vision with which we started out. I’ll give you a heads up when we are ready to start testing!

Next Steps

We will be taking part in Cozad and keep working on the prototype.

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