Rally.Video (YC S20) – Dynamic video platform for social groups

Hey HN!

My name is Ali and I am one of the three co-founders of https://rally.video/. Rally is a video application that makes it easy to hop between breakout conversations. Users can see and hear other conversations around them, as if they were in a shared space.

We started Rally because we needed to host a virtual birthday party, and existing solutions suck for larger groups. At the same time, we noticed bars and restaurants closing, and wanted to build a platform that emulated these physical spaces. With that in mind, we added venues, rooms, and tables. A venue (like a bar or banquet hall) can consist of multiple rooms (like a patio, DJ lounge etc). Each room can fit 35 people, and people can form tables (groups) in a room organically. Tables could have up to 9 people, and can be joined with a simple click. Users can create multiple rooms, allowing for events of all sizes, and we are working quickly to expand the capacity of each room.

What’s magical about this is how much more it feels like a real party, as opposed to feeling like a meeting. Instead of being stuck in a giant gallery view or siloed into breakout rooms, you are free to switch between tables and rooms as you like. Instead of everyone being on mute, you can choose to vibe off of the audible laughter and chatter from neighbouring tables in the room. You can also create private tables for more personal conversations and take the stage to present to everyone around you.

Since launching, people have used our platform for happy hours, team socials, hackathons, brainstorming sessions, conference networking, trade shows, virtual parties, and community gatherings. We know a lot of people are using Zoom breakout rooms for these types of events. Those work fine for board meetings, training, structured workshops and interviews. We think our platform is more valuable when you want less structure and a more social element. Simply put, if you want spontaneity, our platform works. If you want formal structure, use the other tools.

Rally is a web app, with video being streamed using WebRTC - so no plugin installation is required. It works best on Desktop Chrome. We are also working on a mobile version - coming soon.

I am really excited to share our startup with the Hacker News community. I have tried and failed at building a number of companies, and reading a lot of the content here has helped recharge my batteries and helped me keep going.

We are free for anyone to use until the end of August. We are still testing out different use cases and seeing where demand for our product is the strongest. I recognize the space is competitive, and would appreciate your feedback on our product. We’d be grateful if you tried it out for yourself, or joined us for one of our happy hours today or this week. We’d be super grateful if you’d be willing to try it out with a group of 6 or more people, maybe with your work team, and letting us know what you think!

Start your own room by visiting https://rally.video

Attend a happy hour by signing up here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/happy-hour-at-rally-bar-tickets-...

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andrey azimov by Andrey Azimov