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UberMedia Launches Twitter Competitor Chime.in

Does UberMedia have Twitter in its sights with the launch of its new Chime.in network? The company already owns some of the most popular Twitter apps, such as Twidroyd and UberSocial, and some speculate that its latest project, a social network of its own, is aiming right at Twitter’s achilles heel: its users.

Twitter was built on the strength of its userbase well before it was able to monetize them, so a competing network, especially one that could lure away users who access Twitter through UberMedia-owned apps – is a potential threat.

But is that what Chime.in is?

Inadvertently launched yesterday in the iTunes store, Chime.in is UberMedia CEO Bill Gross’ attempt to break in to the social network game.

According to TechCrunch, the app was released a day early. The Chime.in website is currently inaccessible, but rumors are it will go live sometime today.

TechCrunch had access to Chime.in’s support page for a few hours yesterday, and gleaned some information about this mysterious new social network. And it looks like it’s not setting itself up to be a direct competitor with Twitter – yet.

According to TechCrunch, the network is described as an “online and mobile network organized around interests.” It is for people who are already active on social media and who are looking for ways to find others who share their interests, building communities around topics that they like.

In an interview with Bill Gross last week, VentureBeat asked about the new network. Gross wasn’t shy about the fact that it takes some of the best ideas from current networks like Facebook and Twitter, but wanted to stress that Chime.in “is a deeper dive into their interests and intelligent conversations around [users'] passions.”

Gross explained that Chime.in will not replace UberMedia’s Twitter apps, nor is it meant to replace Twitter itself – it is supposed to be a complimentary network that can enhance the social networking experience.

Still, Gross does have millions of users accessing Twitter through his apps. Speculation that he might try to siphon those users into Chime.in isn’t completely unfounded.

What do you think? Is it possible for an “interest based” network to carve out its own niche amidst giants like Facebook and Twitter? Or is Chime.in another flash-in-the-pan network? Let us know in the comments below.

(Image via TechCrunch)

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