Chat Roulette was a challenge that became its own website. The idea was that people could log on to the site and be connected with someone from around the world at random. The website isn’t as popular as it once was but there are many apps that simulate that experience and some of those apps are gaining popularity. Here are some of the ones climbing the app store charts. The ranking listed is for the Social Media category in the iOS App Store as of the publishing date of this article. I’ve only listed the live video or random connection chatting apps in the top fifty.
Melon is making the news as the latest video chatting fad. It connects you with new people based on social media friends and offers private messaging, video chat, and a people search feature. It’s gaining popularity and being featured in articles that are blasting it for the frequency of cyberbullying and the high concentration of males looking for girls that will do whatever they ask on camera.
Live.Me touts the ability to chat with stars and celebrities and broadcast to anyone all over the world. You can find anyone from anywhere or just look to see who is broadcasting around you. There is also the ability to search by topic or interest. Live.Me uses “gifts” and “diamonds” to allow you to share things with other users and even advertises the ability to “date” virtually through the app.
I’ve written about Monkey before. This app was created by a couple of teens who dropped out of high-school to launch a tech startup. It quickly gained a reputation for having too much nudity and not taking some of the responsibility for the content found in the app. This app has been on the FamilyTechBlog uninstall list for a while now.
Formerly called “MyYearbook,” MeetMe is a app that advertises itself as a way to “meet new people.” The app uses your location to find people near you and information that you’ve entered to connect you with people who share your interests. It’s popular in the app store as it’s been around for quite a while and has the largest fan base. MeetMe offers private chat and video chatting as well as live video broadcasting.
Climbing the Charts:
Live stream video chat is pretty much all YouNow is about. You can broadcast yourself, find broadcasters, and even join the broadcast as a video guest. The app store listing calls for you to build your fanbase and become a YouNow celebrity. There are some complaints on in the reviews about accounts that have been reported for inappropriate content not being removed because they are popular on YouNow.
CAM is popular because it allows you to select the gender you’d like to chat with. It automatically connects you with someone and even automatically texts an invite to everyone on your contacts list without your permission. This practice has caused it to dip in the standings but some continue to use the app because they like the ability to chat or flirt with people they are attracted to.
What Parents Should Know
I don’t usually recommend any of these type of app for your teens or kids. Not only is it dangerous to connect with random people who could be broadcasting whatever they’d like for you to see. It’s also a problem because of the potential for predators. Any connection with strangers is dangerous. Some of these apps use your location to connect you and it’s therefore possible to meet people online that you may meet up with later. My advice is to uninstall any of these apps if you see them on your kids phones or tablets. There is no reason to use one of these apps to connect with friends since you can use Instagram or Facebook Messenger to do that now. Uninstall on sight.