Hey, Minus, are you guys alright? Because you're demonstrating the developer equivalent of multiple personality disorder. Sixteen months after Dropbox-style cloud storage app Minus shifted 180 degrees to take aim at Instagram, it has once again become a completely different service, this time with a new name. Minus is now "Meow," a randomized chat client, sort of like Omegle or Chatroulette without the video. All that's left of the latest Minus re-brand, or indeed the original storage app, is the "com.minus.android" APK name.

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There isn't much to Meow. It works as a standard all-in-one chat client a la WhatsApp and its army of clones, with a contact list sourced from Gmail and Facebook. But the creators seem much more interested in the "random chat" aspect available from the slide-out nav bar. Selecting it will instantly connect you with random strangers in either one-on-one dialogue or group chat. As a chat app, it seems reasonably competent - you can stalk browse a master list of registered users, and the sessions themselves support photo uploads and short voice clips. Small remnants of the old Minus photo service can be seen in user photo galleries (the promo screenshots are nothing but selfies and food - ugh). Currently the Minus website is still showing the Instagram-style homepage, but the "Download" page is promoting the new app.

This company's erratic shifts in direction are fascinating from an observational standpoint, but I imagine that those few cloud storage users who are still along for the ride now have web service whiplash. At present Meow doesn't seem to have any kind of monetization strategy in place; it's a free download for Android 2.3.3 and higher.

Michael Crider
Michael is a native Texan and a former graphic designer. He's been covering technology in general and Android in particular since 2011. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction, and salsa verde, in no particular order.

  • Lumi

    That's a really cute icon! Too bad I've got enough Whatsapp clones on my phone.

  • Henrique Persechini

    meow... meowbeenz?

    • TopXKiller

      right meow!

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  • http://flavors.me/sabret00the sabret00the

    Erm, it's been a random chat client for a while now.

    To the point I didn't even know it was an Intagram gimp.

    • http://infotainmentempire.blogspot.com Rob

      I sadly know this has been the case for a long time now.

  • tokuiten

    I didn't know minus was anything other than a really shitty GIF host.

  • Drooblz

    Do I look like a cat to you boy?

  • Deeco

    Minus - Personality Disorder

  • Ricky

    I'm 14 and its basically a place where guys get nudes... But I did meet my girlfriend of 6 months on there... even though she lives across the US

  • black

    I love cats, so I will use this. ^_^

  • http://kennydude.me/ Joe Simpson

    Wasn't minus a cloud storage provider?

  • http://www.technoduce.com/ jkrish

    Not only meow, There are several whats app clone apps like telegram, viber and line is beating whatsapp now. Users likes more sticker option which is not in whatsapp.

  • SwethaSharma

    Try Photo4tune and talk with strangers all day! Share pics, audio and video files with them instantly! Here's the link: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.photo4tune.navigator