Talkray, an alternative to Whatsapp, WeChat, and many other messaging apps worldwide, claims they have had 12 million downloads, with more than one million being daily active, since its launch in the second half of 2012.
The app’s selling point is free quality voice calls under slow mobile Internet connection. Its users are in developing markets such as India, the Maldives, Jamaica, Tanzania, and Southeast Asia.
Though it is for free, the app has been making enough in-app ad revenue for the five-member startup, Zhong Nan, co-founder and CTO of Talkray told me.
Based in the U.S., the startup was founded by Zhong Nan (a Chinese) and Zafer Ahmed (an Indian), who used to be colleagues at Motorola.
The company just announced a new round funding of US$5.3 million from Zhen Fund (a Chinese seed investment firm), Lerer-Hippeau, SV-Angel, and General Catalyst. Prior to this round, the company raised US$2.1 million from General Catalyst, Andreessen Horowitz, Lerer Ventures, and SV Angel.
Talkray is Y Combinator alumnus that graduated from the seed accelerator in 2012.