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Indian Twitter alternative Koo app getting popular: What is it, how to get started?

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Koo app was launched back in March last year as an Indianised version of the popular micro-blogging site Twitter to promote Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative.

A few months ago, when the government banned hundreds of Chinese apps, the ones "Made in India" started gaining traction for promoting the Indian government's Atmanirbhar Bharat vision. Among those apps is Koo, which is none other than the Indian alternative to the popular microblogging site Twitter. Also Read - Twitter Spaces: How to start, join the audio-based Clubhouse alternative

Fast forward to February 2021, the Koo app is suddenly getting popular among social media users and has become the talk of the town. This has even led to the '#Kooapp' trending on Twitter with hundreds and thousands of tweets on the same. Also Read - Twitter Spaces coming soon to desktop: Report

The "Made in India" application is gaining momentum as several government agencies including the IT Ministry, among others, began moving to the platform. The application has already gained more than one million downloads on the Google Play Store. Also Read - Twitter-owned live streaming platform Periscope shuts down after six years

But what exactly is the Koo app? Why is everyone talking about the app suddenly and how can you get it? We answer all these questions for you today.

Before we take a deep dive into the application and understand how it works, you should note that the sudden shift to the app is due to the ongoing battle between Twitter and the Indian Government.

To give you a gist, Twitter is currently under the Indian government's radar ever since the micro-blogging platform refused to comply with the government's order to take down hashtags, tweets, and accounts that allegedly promote farmer genocide. The government has sent a notice to the microblogging site. Several media reports suggest that if the situation continues to be the same, the day won't be far when Twitter, which currently has millions of active users in India, will get suspended in the country.

What is Koo app?

Koo has been developed by Aprameya Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka back in March 2020. The app is meant for people to express thoughts, opinions, and strike a discussion on trending topics. The idea is very similar to Twitter.

Koo has also been declared as an Atmanirbhar app as part of the AatmaNirbhar App Innovation Challenge that took place in August last year.

Koo app UI

The app lets you follow trends and users including celebrities and people of prominence. The best thing about the app is that it is available in various Indian languages such as Telugu, Kannada, Bengali, Tamil, Malayalam, Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi, Oriya, and Assamese. This gives users a better way to express themselves in the language of their choice.

The Koo app is joined by the Ministry of IT, MyGov, Digital India, India Post, NIC, NIELIT, SAMEER, Common Services Center, UMANG app, Digi Locker, NIXI, STPI, CDAC, and CMET, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Anil Kumble, and more famous personalities and departments. This definitely gives us a reason to try it out at least once.

How to download Koo app?

The Koo app is available for both Android and iOS users. All you need to do is head to the Google Play Store or the App Store > Search for the Koo app > Tap on the Install option > you are good to go.

How to get started with Koo app?

Once you have downloaded the app on your smartphone, getting started is easy. Here are the simple steps you need to follow:

Step 1: Open the Koo app and select your preferred language

Step 2: Enter your mobile number

Step 3: Verify it via OTP

Step 4: Now, you can add a profile picture or skip the process for later. With this, you are officially a part of the Koo app.

The app has primarily five sections: Home, Trending Hashtags, Search, Messages, and Notifications. While the top left corner includes the Profile section for you to manage your account, the top right corner has a section to view trending Koos in the past 24 hours. There is also a 'Koo' option in the bottom right corner of the homepage for you to 'Koo your opinion'. The app carries yellow tones and is pretty systemic and easy to use.

With a simple UI and growing popularity, the Koo app can be a tough contender to Twitter, which is under the scanner of the Indian government.

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Published:Thu, February 11, 2021 7:00am | Updated:Thu, February 11, 2021 7:01am

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