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Neobase hands-on preview: It’s just like Facebook, but with complete privacy

Michael Brown | Nov. 11, 2015
After more than two years of development, this private social-networking device is almost ready for prime time.

Neone Neobase user interface

Posts and any files you want to share appear in a chronological feed. (Yes, this is a very old picture.) 

Neone can't collect any personal information about you, it can't profile you and sell that data to others, there are no subscription fees, and no advertising. The company's revenue stream is limited to selling its hardware. The people you invite to share information via your Neobase don't need to purchase a Neobase of their own-unless they want to exchange messages outside your shared network of friends you family. "Our hope is that other people will buy one so that they can share with other people," Neone Chief Product Officer Dan Cohen told me in an interview last week.

Still in development

My early opinion of the Neobase is based on a briefing with Cohen and hands-on experience using the final hardware and a beta version of the client. This product isn't finished and Neone isn't offering it for sale. I did encounter a few bugs that will need to be squashed before then. Neone could also improve its Neobase by allowing you to customize the invitations you send to people you want to share with, to reduce the chances they (or their email client) will dismiss the invitation as spam.

I dig the idea behind the Neobase, but it is destined to have some shortcomings by its very nature. On the upside, it's a closed and private network. The downside is that the only people you can share information with are the people who accept your invitation. One of the best features of Facebook is the way it enables old friends to find each other and reconnect. If you don't have an email address for your long-lost best friend from fourth grade, you'll never be able to reconnect with him or her via the Neobase. Regrettably, Facebook might remain a necessary evil for the foreseeable future.

Source: Techhive 


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