Vallejo woman invents app to add voice to silent video/text messages

Vallejo woman invents app to add voice to silent video/text messages

Vallejo native Chynna Morgan says she’s invented a way to take the “what-the-hell-did-you-mean-by-that?” out of electronic messaging with an app that allows you to add your voice or music to them.

Gif Out Loud, which launched last month, is a free app with a Gif and video keyboard that allows you to record your voice, add the perfect song or create your own Gifs or videos, she said.

Gifs are short, silent looping videos that express emotion, Morgan, 25, said.

The tone of voice is one important element missing from electronic messaging like texts, which can lead to misinterpretation or misunderstanding, and since many millennials have essentially given up phone calls and in-person conversation in favor of this type of communication, a way to add sound was needed, she said.

“We’re trying to bring our voice back by allowing people to add the tone to something that might be misunderstood without it,” she said. “Also, as an actor, I know that artists and musicians are always trying to find platforms to showcase their talents, and this is perfect for that, too.”

Chynna Morgan and her brother Hosea discuss the new iPhone app Chynna developed, and launched last month, that allows users to add their voice, music or other sound to until-now silent videos, and send them as messages. (RACHEL RASKIN-ZRIHEN — TIMES-HERALD)Chynna Morgan and her brother Hosea discuss the new iPhone app Chynna developed, and launched last month, that allows users to add their voice, music or other sound to until-now silent videos, and send them as messages. (RACHEL RASKIN-ZRIHEN — TIMES-HERALD) 

Morgan is currently in a Toyota commercial and a play called Misery Loves Company by Dee Dee Simons and directed by her father, that just finished a run in Las Vegas and is opening in Texas in March, she said.

The app idea came to her in the shower, Morgan said.

“I was thinking about Gifs, because I like them and use them all the time, and it just came to my mind. ‘what if we could add our own voice to a Gif and be able to send it through messaging?’” she said. “I asked my family what they thought, and they loved it. I know that audio messaging is growing overseas, though less so here, but this is going to change that.”

The health care management student said she did some research to make sure she’d really come up with something unique, and believes she has. She has since quit her online masters program to concentrate on Gif Out Loud.

“There are other sound-adding apps, but no one has an app allowing you to add your own personal sound or touch for messaging, and no one else has a keyboard.,” she said.

Gif Out Loud has a library of millions of Gifs to choose from through Giphy, though app users can also create their own.

“Then, you can add your voice or music from Spotify, or record your own sound. It’s bigger than messaging,” Morgan said. “Artists can use it to promote their own talents for the world to see. We think this is the new way to communicate — your tone, your sound, your way.”

Morgan, and her brother, Hosea Morgan, 22, insist the app is so easy and user-friendly that even older people can use it and enjoy it.

“You can send your message to any social media site from the app or the keyboard and the person will get it as a video,” Hosea Morgan said. “I’m using it all the time, now.”

The app has a copy-and-paste function and there are built-in hashtags to choose from, as well, Chynna Morgan said.

Gif Out Loud is starting to create some buzz, the pair said.

“It was just featured on Product Hunt,” an app/tech website, she said.

“We’re getting all kinds of positive feedback,” he said. “All my friends have it and they say it’s a game-changer. What better way to use an app to personally express yourself to people? You can put your favorite song or artist on this. People love it.”

Chynna Morgan said she hopes eventually to be able to make money from advertisers and/or partnerships with big brands, some of which have already begun expressing interest.

“But, we’re still seeing if anything needs tweaking,” she said. “I’m very passionate about this right now. It’s the beginning of what I like to call, loud messaging. There’s a need for it.”

With a mother who’s a social worker doing home care and a father who’s a retired correctional officer, nurse and stage director, Chynna Morgan said she believes she was born with an entrepreneurship gene, or something.

“I have always been a business person,” she said. “I’ve been selling Avon since I was 10. I’ve always been business savvy. I think I was born that way, and I always wanted my own company.”

Under the circumstances, it was almost inevitable that Chynna Morgan was going to come up with something to create a business around, they said.

“It was fate,” Hosea Morgan said.

Contact Rachel Raskin-Zrihen at (707) 553-6824.

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Published at Thu, 19 Jan 2017 15:17:58 +0000